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Thread: Federal judge: Florida canít stop poor felons from voting

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    Default Federal judge: Florida canít stop poor felons from voting

    U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle ruled against a Florida law limiting the scope of Amendment 4, a 2018 ballot measure allowing most felons to vote. He called the law, which he mostly struck down, a ďpay-to-vote systemĒ

    TALLAHASSEE ó A federal judge ruled Sunday that it is unconstitutional to prevent felons in Florida from voting because they canít afford to pay back court fees, fines and restitution to victims, striking down parts of a law passed by Republican lawmakers and signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis last year.

    Calling the law a ďpay-to-vote system,Ē U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkleís 125-page ruling declares that court fees are a tax, and it creates a new process for determining whether felons are eligible to vote.

    "This order holds that the State can condition voting on payment of fines and restitution that a person is able to pay but cannot condition voting on payment of amounts a person is unable to pay,Ē Hinkle wrote.

    With one sentence, Hinkle also allowed two large groups of felons to register to vote: those who were appointed an attorney for their criminal case because they couldnít afford one on their own, and anyone who had their financial obligations converted to civil liens.

    Most felons are appointed attorneys, and nearly all have their court fees and fines converted to civil liens.

    For all other felons who canít afford to pay their financial obligations, Hinkle ordered state officials to adopt a new process for determining whether felons are too poor to vote: they can request an advisory opinion from the Secretary of State Laurel Lee.

    If Lee canít issue the opinion within 21 days of receipt ó and tell the felon how much fines and restitution to victims they owe, and how the state came up with that amount ó they canít stop the felon from registering to vote, Hinkle wrote.
    https://www.tampabay.com/florida-pol...s-from-voting/

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    One interesting thing in the ruling was the calculation and the state's admission that they couldn't figure out fines owed for some of those seeking to vote until 2026 or beyond.

    When it comes down to it, the entire law is eventually going to thrown out because for even those capable of paying any fines or restitution, the state has no way of telling people what they owe. In some cases the court points out restitution doesn't go through the state and is paid directly to victims that could have died or moved so there is no way to verify payment. If restitution does go through the state then the state charges a fee which can only be considered a tax and any tax required to register to vote is unconstitutional.
    Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will learn in no other, and scarce in that.

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    The ruling also makes clear the amount the state says is owed by a felon must be exact and can't be estimated because asking for too much would be unconstitutional and asking for less would violate the requirement of paying all fines and restitution.

    The court has said, the person is eligible to vote until the state can show clear evidence they can't. The means the state has to have the exact amount of money owed and can't include court costs because that is a tax. The state also can't presume someone can pay if they were declared indigent at the time of their trial.
    Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will learn in no other, and scarce in that.

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    seems pretty simple.......just exclude all felons.....
    Isaiah 6:5
    ďWoe to me!Ē I cried. ďI am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty.Ē

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    Nope, PmP, that is not so.
    Russian trolls and their supporters go on Ignore, automatically: no second chance.


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    Quote Originally Posted by PostmodernProphet View Post
    seems pretty simple.......just exclude all felons.....
    You wish that was the case as do most Florida officials. Now that 10's of thousands of new voters may be able to vote, its got to affect election results.

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    Hello floridafan,

    Quote Originally Posted by floridafan View Post
    You wish that was the case as do most Florida officials. Now that 10's of thousands of new voters may be able to vote, its got to affect election results.
    Florida has had some pretty messed up elections for a long time.

    I remember they got caught illegally striking names from the voter rolls in 2000, and there were actually more of those than Bush won by over Al Gore.
    Personal Ignore Policy PIP: I like civil discourse. I will give you all the respect in the world if you respect me. Mouth off to me, or express overt racism, you will be PERMANENTLY Ignore Listed. Zero tolerance. No exceptions. I'll never read a word you write, even if quoted by another, nor respond to you, nor participate in your threads. ... Ignore the shallow. Cherish the thoughtful. Long Live Civil Discourse, Mutual Respect, and Good Debate! ps: Feel free to adopt my PIP. It works well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by floridafan View Post
    You wish that was the case as do most Florida officials. Now that 10's of thousands of new voters may be able to vote, its got to affect election results.
    How many felons do you have in Florida?

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    Quote Originally Posted by TOP View Post
    How many felons do you have in Florida?
    The numbers I saw said in excess of 10,000 ex felons live in FL

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    Quote Originally Posted by floridafan View Post
    The numbers I saw said in excess of 10,000 ex felons live in FL
    Lucky you

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    Quote Originally Posted by TOP View Post
    Lucky you
    actually I was wrong, just looked it up again and the number is closer to 1.5 million. Even this current administration wont be able to cheat enough to offset those numbers

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    Quote Originally Posted by floridafan View Post
    actually I was wrong, just looked it up again and the number is closer to 1.5 million. Even this current administration wont be able to cheat enough to offset those numbers
    Even luckier you... Get on that vote, will you?....lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by TOP View Post
    Even luckier you... Get on that vote, will you?....lol
    Has the NC governor changed his mind yet, genius?

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    Florida goes blue
    Russian trolls and their supporters go on Ignore, automatically: no second chance.


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    Quote Originally Posted by floridafan View Post
    Has the NC governor changed his mind yet, genius?
    About what?

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