Iowa governor signs order restoring voting rights to some felons
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) signed Wednesday an executive order restoring voting rights to some Iowans with felony records, the Des Moines Register reports.
Why it matters: It had been the last state in the country to bar all felons from voting, unless they applied for a special exception from the governor's office.
- The new order grants the right to vote to felons who have completed their prison sentence, parole and probation — but it excludes individuals charged with certain serious crimes, including murder or sexual abuse.
- It will restore voting rights to approximately 60,000 Iowans, including 1 in 10 Black adults.
- Any required restitution will not need to be paid back in total in order for an individual to regain their voting rights.
Between the lines: Shifting laws on felon voting rights isn't a quick process, but officials will have just three months to make the change before the 2020 elections.
What to watch: Reynolds is calling for an amendment to Iowa's constitution in order to permanently enact the change.