Florida may well restrict the voting rights of former prisoners

La Floride pourra bien restreindre le droit de vote des anciens détenus

The supreme Court of the United States was allowed on Thursday the Florida to retain a law forcing former detainees to pay their court costs before they regain their right to vote.

Less than four months from the american presidential election of November 3, the decision may involve hundreds of thousands of people in a State-key where the polls are often particularly tight.

A local judge had rejected this law in may, arguing that it established a system of ” voting fee “, but an appeals court had in a second time annulled the judgment and the u.s. supreme Court has finally decided to leave things in the state.

Three judges, progressive in the temple of american law voted otherwise, including Sonia Sotomayor, who regretted a decision preventing it according to it thousands of voters go to the polls ” simply because they are poor “.

Moreover, it stressed that it was difficult for many former inmates of this State in the south-east of the country to know the amount of legal costs which they must pay.

During a local referendum in November 2018, the inhabitants of Florida had allowed more than a million of them to recover their right to vote, with the exception of the ex-prisoners convicted of homicide or sex crimes.

But the elected members of the State, in the hands of the republicans, have subsequently adopted a law requiring former inmates to settle all of their debts vis-à-vis the justice before being able to vote, what many can not afford, the sums amounting often to many thousands of dollars or even more.

“The right to vote is a pillar of democracy,” commented Thursday, the elected local democrat Donna Shalala, after the decision of the supreme Court. “Poverty should never be an obstacle to this fundamental right “.

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