Sep 22, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Bloomberg raises $16.1M to help Florida felons regain voting rights


Photo: Eva Marie Uzcategui/AFP via Getty Images

Billionaire Michael Bloomberg has raised over $16 million to help felons pay outstanding fines and fees to regain their voting rights in Florida.

The big picture: A 2018 state constitutional amendment in Florida allows for felons who have completed their sentences to regain their right to vote — so long as they've also paid back any outstanding fines, fees or restitution.

  • Bloomberg's fundraising, in addition to $5 million from the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, has now paid off monetary obligations for 32,000 felons in Florida just before Election Day.
  • Voters who were already registered to vote, Black or Latino, and had fines and fees of less than $1500 were eligible for the payback initiative.

What they're saying: "The right to vote is fundamental to our democracy and no American should be denied that right," Bloomberg said via a spokesperson.

  • "Working together with the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, we are determined to end disenfranchisement and the discrimination that has always driven it."
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