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The Wshington State Senate convenes for floor session, Jan. 15, 2020.

OLYMPIA - Senate Republican Leader Mark Schoesler, R-Ritzville, issued this statement on Senate Bill 6228, a Democrat-sponsored proposal that received a public hearing this morning and is scheduled for a vote Friday by the Senate State Government, Tribal Relations and Elections Committee. SB 6228 would automatically restore voting rights for felons as soon as their confinement in a state Department of Corrections facility has ended.

The bill’s proponents argue that denying felons the right to vote discriminates against people of color who have been convicted of crimes, but victims of crimes are also predominantly people of color. The rights of felons should not be valued more than the rights of victims, regardless of their skin.

Prison time, community custody and restitution are all reasonable penalties for our courts to include in a sentence. Punishment for a crime in Washington does not automatically end at the prison gate, so we should not restore voting rights for convicted felons until they have completed their sentences, including their period under DOC supervision and paying restitution to victims. 

“When this committee held a work session on this issue last fall, at least two convicted murderers expressed support for this bill. One of them, who testified via phone from a prison in Grays Harbor County, had beaten a couple with a hammer and robbed them and later beat a separate victim to death with the hammer. The other had been convicted of aggravated first-degree murder in gang-related shooting deaths. It should bother people that convicted murderers are backing a bill that Democrats seem to be fast-tracking this session. That tells me this bill is actually a step toward letting all inmates vote. Imagine allowing a block of people who have no ties to a community having influence over how much people pay in taxes or who is elected to serve us – even before they’ve paid their own debt to society.” 

(8) comments

Desert Dweller

No deleting for no reason guys come on

OnlyOneVoice

Taken from Bureau of Justice Statistics

The 401,288 state prisoners released in 2005 had 1,994,000 arrests during the 9-year period, an average of 5 arrests per released prisoner. Sixty percent of these arrests occurred during years 4 through 9.An estimated 68% of released prisoners were arrested within 3 years, 79% within 6 years, and 83% within 9 years.Eighty-two percent of prisoners arrested during the 9-year period were arrested within the first 3 years.Almost half (47%) of prisoners who did not have an arrest within 3 years of release were arrested during years 4 through 9.Forty-four percent of released prisoners were arrested during the first year following release, while 24% were arrested during year-9.

Desert Dweller

Thank you very much

Desert Dweller

Anybody care to check what the recidivism rate is for ex convicts?

Comment deleted.
JohnQPublic

It because Democrats aren't reasonable. They can take something perfectly acceptable in normal society and attempt to weaponize it to take away your right to liberty and responsibility, under the false sense of safety. In other words, they represent lies.

Desert Dweller

Yep, I want the guy that robbed the bank, or raped the girl, or sold the meth and heroin, or stole my car, or embezzled from the special olympics to help structure our society-------NOT!!

OnlyOneVoice

So if a child molester pays for his crime let him or her babysit again? Or give a murderer his gun rights back since he did his time?

LilHoss

Commit the crime and do the time! Once your sentence AND parole time is completed, why not have your voting rights re-establishment. Become a viable citizen to your community and country! We ALL have fallen short one time or another in our life!

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