In 2018, voters in Florida passed Amendment 4, restoring voting rights to ex-felons. The measure passed 65 to 35 percent.
Now, Florida Governor and major Trump ally Ron DeSantis is expected to blunt the impact of the measure by approving a bill that would require ex-felons to have paid off all fees connected to their sentence before voting. That means Donald Trump might get a major boost in 2020, reports the Daily Beast.
SB 7066 requires ex-felons to pay off all financial obligations from their sentencing or get them excused by a judge.
As Vox notes, close to 1.4 million Floridians were eligible to vote thanks to the popular amendment, and it’s not clear how many will be affected if DeSantis signs SB 7066 into law.
Increasingly, people who serve prison time are saddled with thousands of dollars in debt that hobbles their efforts to rebuild their lives on the outside. The debt, which accrues interest, can stem from bench-warrant fees, filing-clerks fees, court-appointed attorney fees, crime-lab analysis fees, incarceration costs, DNA-database fees and jury fees, reports the Atlantic.
As the Daily Beast observes, the restriction on voting rights might be enough to hand Florida to Trump in 2020.
Florida is a key state in Trump’s 2020 campaign. Trump officially launched his re-election bid in Orlando, and many of his policies have catered to Florida voters, including a crackdown on Cuba and Venezuela.