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A 60-year-old man's voting rights are restored in a Miami-Dade County courtroom in Nov. 2019. Photo: Zak Bennett/AFP via Getty Images

Florida has given little guidance to election officials after the state restored voting rights to an estimated 1.4 million former felons last year, resulting in "widespread confusion," the Wall Street Journal reports.

The big picture: Floridians have until Feb. 18 to register to vote for the presidential primary in the critical swing state. Felons in the state are required to pay outstanding court fees and fines before casting ballots, per a bill that went into effect last year.

What's happening: Florida "has no centralized source that people can consult to determine whether they owe fees, fines or restitution," the WSJ reports, and many Floridians with felony records "fear running afoul of the law by registering to vote."

What they're saying: “It is a confusing, Byzantine morass,” Myrna Pérez, director of the Voting Rights and Elections Program at the Brennan Center for Justice, told WSJ.

  • “We’re going to continue to do everything we can within our purview to get it right,” Rep. James Grant (R-Fla.) told WSJ.

Go deeper: The sticky web of felon voting laws

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
11 mins ago - Energy & Environment

Higher education expands its climate push

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

New or expanded climate initiatives are popping up at several universities, a sign of the topic's rising prominence and recognition of the threats and opportunities it creates.

Why it matters: Climate and clean energy initiatives at colleges and universities are nothing new, but it shows expanded an campus focus as the effects of climate change are becoming increasingly apparent, and the world is nowhere near the steep emissions cuts that scientists say are needed to hold future warming in check.

Ina Fried, author of Login
37 mins ago - Economy & Business

The pandemic isn't slowing tech

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Thursday's deluge of Big Tech earnings reports showed one thing pretty clearly: COVID-19 may be bad in all sorts of ways, but it's not slowing down the largest tech companies. If anything, it's helping some companies, like Amazon and Apple.

Yes, but: With the pandemic once again worsening in the U.S. and Europe, it's not clear how long the tech industry's winning streak can last.

Texas early voting surpasses 2016's total turnout

Early voting in Austin earlier this month. Photo: Sergio Flores/Getty Images

Texas' early and mail-in voting totals for the 2020 election have surpassed the state's total voter turnout in 2016, with 9,009,850 ballots already cast compared to 8,969,226 in the last presidential cycle.

Why it matters: The state's 38 Electoral College votes are in play — and could deliver a knockout blow for Joe Biden over President Trump — despite the fact that it hasn't backed a Democrat for president since 1976.