Under California law, people with felony convictions can only vote after they’ve served both their prison sentence and finished parole.
That could change in November if California voters approve Proposition 17.
Prop. 17 would amend the state’s Constitution to allow felons out on parole to regain their right to participate in democracy. During its during its virtual meeting Tuesday, the San Jose City Council will decide whether to support or oppose the statewide measure.
Councilwoman Magdalena Carrasco called on her colleagues to support the initiative.
“Voting is a cornerstone to our democracy, a system of government that is stronger when it is fair and inclusive, and stripping the right to vote from formerly incarcerated people is a form of voter suppression that is deeply out of step with California’s values,” she wrote in a memo explaining her position. “When a person completes their prison sentence and is released to parole, they should be encouraged to re-enter society and have a stake in their community, including the freedom to vote.”
The proposition has been endorsed by the California League of Women Voters, Gov. Gavin Newsom and Secretary of State Alex Padilla. Crimes Victims United and the Election Integrity Project California oppose it.