In almost every state in the U.S., incarcerated individuals are not allowed to vote, and in some state, convicted felons permanently lose their right to vote even after they have finished serving their sentence.
Most states even impose voting restrictions on former prisoners who are out on parole, and a few states—Kentucky, Florida, Iowa, and Virginia—have lifetime disenfranchisement laws for anyone who has ever been to prison. These laws combine to prohibit an estimated 6.1 million Americans from voting, per one October 2016 estimation.
Many have lobbied against felony voter disenfranchisement and consider it a form of voter suppression. Felony voter laws disproportionately impact people of color and many believe it is fundamentally wrong to prohibit individuals from participating in a political process that so deeply impacts their lives.
But others have argued that individuals who fail to follow the law forfeit their right to fully participate in society, which includes the political sphere.
Voting rights advocates still push for felons to be allowed to vote across the country.
Felon disenfranchisement is enormous form of voter suppression in the United States, impacting 6.1 million Americans https://t.co/2tz2xSQ7zh