FGCU Journalism Students Profile Former Felons About to Vote Again

As part of a partnership between WGCU and the FGCU journalism program, we are featuring the following stories created by senior students for their Capstone project. A federal trial began April 27 in Tallahassee concerning the restoration of voting rights for most non-violent former felons in Florida. Voters in the state overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment in 2018 to overhaul Florida’s backlogged clemency process and automatically restore voting rights to felons who have completed their sentences. Then in 2019, the Republican-controlled state legislature passed a bill requiring all fines, fees and restitution associated with a felony sentencing be repaid before felons could regain their voting rights. A U.S. District judge in Tallahassee will consider the constitutional merits of that legislation in a consolidated class action suit challenging the law. Clifford Tyson is one of the 17 plaintiffs in the lawsuit. Written by Leah Sankey, with research and interview assistance

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Author: WGCU Public Media