Politics
12:37 pm
Tue January 14, 2014

Kentucky House Committee Passes Measure Restoring Voting Rights to Some Felons

A bill to would restore voting rights for non-violent felons has passed a Kentucky House committee.

The measure is Rep. Jesse Crenshaw's latest attempt to put approximately 130,000 felons back on the voting rolls.

Similar efforts have repeatedly stalled in the Republican-controlled Senate. But Crenshaw, a Lexington Democrat, says he hopes that his bill will fare better this year due to support from U.S. Sen. Rand Paul.

“I hope that he would, in fact, speak with those in the Senate and urge them to call it for a vote, in committee and on the floor. I hope that he would do that."

A spokesman for Sen. Paul says he plans to urge Republicans in the Kentucky Senate to pass the legislation, and will testify before an upcoming Senate committee on the issue.

Currently, felons must seek a restoration of Civil Rights from the governor to regain the right to vote. Beshear has granted nearly 8,000 restorations since taking office.

If passed, Crenshaw’s legislation would put the issue to voters on the November ballot.