Judge strikes down Florida's law demanding felons pay all court debt before they can vote
Judge's gavel (Shutterstock)

Florida passed a ballot initiative allowing all former felons the access to vote after they served their time. In a panic, Republicans worked to find ways to restrict it, passing a law that mandated felons pay their court debts before they are allowed to vote.

Akin to a poll tax, the judge in the case ruled the Florida law unconstitutional.

"(a) The system is unconstitutional as applied to individuals who are otherwise eligible to vote but are genuinely unable to pay the required amount. (b) The requirement to pay, as a condition of voting, amounts that are unknown and cannot be determined with diligence is unconstitutional. (c) The requirement to pay fees and costs as a condition of voting is unconstitutional because they are, in substance, taxes," the filing says.

You can read the excerpt of the ruling below: