III. Legislative Updates
Georgia: According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the state of Georgia has yet to issue clarifying advice for the state’s absentee voting law which state elections officials were interpreting as making it a crime for anyone to even place a voter’s sealed ballot in a mailbox with their consent. “There is no set date for when the guidance will come,” a spokesman for the Attorney General’s office told the paper.
Kentucky: On his first day in office, new Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin (R) filed an executive order reversing an executive order by former Gov. Steve Beshear (D) that restored the voting rights to thousands of ex-felons and made thousands more eligible to have theirs restored. “While I have been a vocal supporter of the restoration of rights,” Bevin said in a prepared statement, “it is an issue that must be addressed through the legislature and by the will of the people.” Bevin’s order will not retroactively affect felons who, since Nov. 24, have received a certificate from the state Department of Corrections confirming their restoration of rights.
Louisiana: Secretary of State Tom Schedler is planning to ask the Legislature for money to implement a new voting system for the state that will include the use of tablet computers to cast ballots. Schedler will need about $150 million from the Legislature to replace the state’s 15-year old voting machines.
Maryland: According to a report in The Washington Post, Maryland Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller, Jr. has enough votes to override Gov. Larry Hogan’s veto of a bill restoring the voting rights of ex-felons.