A bill that would restore voting rights for thousands of Kentucky felons isn’t likely to pass this year. Lawmakers say they could not reach an agreement over different versions of the proposed legislation. GOP Senate Floor Leader Damon Thayer previously amended the bill to include a five year waiting period and not cover felons with multiple offenses. Supporters of the proposed legislation have criticized Thayer’s changes, which would not affect about half of the 180,000 Kentuckians the original bill was meant to help.
Thayer now says compromise and passage is “unlikely” and his chamber is more concerned about passing a new state budget than what he calls “controversial legislation.”
But bill sponsor Jesse Crenshaw says Thayer is refusing to help find a compromise. “It’s hard for me to deal with Sen. Thayer’s logic because of the fact that he is the man that has to act on calling the bill, calling even the senate committee substitute to not recede and he’s the only one that can do that,” he says.