It’s election season, and friends and family have asked me a few questions about crimes associated with voting. I’m not an expert on election laws – here at the School of Government, Bob Joyce is our go-to guy on such issues – but I’ve tried to respond correctly. Read on for the questions and answers.
Almost all states place some limitation on felons’ right to vote. Those limitations—which can be traced from ancient political traditions of “civil death” for certain crimes to more recent history in the post-Reconstruction United States—vary widely from state to state. They are sometimes controversial. For example, litigation involving Virginia’s restriction was mentioned in the July 29 News Roundup, with a follow-up on the ensuing executive action from the Washington Post here. Politics aside, today’s post covers some of the technical contours of North Carolina’s voting law for felons.