House votes to reinstate voting rights to formerly incarcerated felons

Rep. Pat Smith, D-Baton Rouge, celebrated the House passing a bill that would restore the right to vote to some felons on probation and parole. (Photo: Sarah Gamard)

Paul Braun and Devon Sanders

 After rejecting the bill twice this session, the House voted 60-40 to reinstate voting rights to formerly incarcerated felons after five years even if they are still on parole.

The bill came after a long fight by prisoner rights advocates. Louisiana is one of 21 states where felons lose the right to vote during incarceration and for the duration of their probation and parole, according to a study from the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Sixteen states and the District of Columbia have more lax policies about restoring felons’ voting rights. The 13 other states generally have more restrictive laws than Louisiana.

Read the full story in The Daily Advertiser.

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