A national voting rights group filed a class action lawsuit against Gov. Rick Scott in federal court on Monday. The Fair Elections Legal Network, based in Washington, D.C., claims the method Florida uses to grant clemency to former felons is unconstitutional and wants voting rights restored to seven plaintiffs immediately. Scott’s office, meanwhile, defended the state’s clemency process. The complaint comes one week after a group led by Desmond Meade of Orlando appeared before the state Supreme Court in an attempt to move forward with a constitutional amendment restoring voting rights to non-violent former felons.
The suit was filed in the U.S. District Court in Tallahassee on behalf of seven Floridians barred from voting because of felony convictions – two of which were denied their voting rights restored because of traffic violations.
The complaint states “there are no laws, rules or regulations governing the Board’s determinations, which remain wholly arbitrary.”
About 1.7 million people in Florida can’t vote because of a past felony conviction, even after completing their sentences, making up almost 30 percent of all such cases in the entire country.
Full Article: Group seeking voting rights for ex-felons files lawsuit against Gov. Scott – Orlando Sentinel.