News & Politics

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe Restores Voting Rights to More Than 200,000 Convicted Felons

Gov. Terry McAuliffe holds up the order he signed to restore rights to felons in Virginia at the Capitol in Richmond, Va., Friday, April 22, 2016. More than 200,000 convicted felons will be able to cast ballots in the swing state of Virginia in November's election under a sweeping executive order by McAuliffe announced Friday that restores their rights to vote and run for office. (Mark Gormus /Richmond Times-Dispatch via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT

Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D-VA) flexed his executive muscles Friday in a way that will almost certainly benefit Democrats in the upcoming November elections. The Clinton crony used his executive power to restore voting rights to more than 200,000 convicted felons, going around his Republican-run legislature. The McAuliffe administration has already restored the rights of more than 18,000 felons, according to Fox News.

More than 200,000 convicted felons will be able to cast ballots in the swing state of Virginia in November’s election under a sweeping executive order by Democratic Gov.

The Democrat said his actions would help undo Virginia’s long history of trying to suppress the black vote.

“Too often in both our distant and recent history, politicians have used their authority to restrict people’s ability to participate in our democracy,” McAuliffe said in a statement. “Today we are reversing that disturbing trend and restoring the rights of more than 200,000 of our fellow Virginians, who work, raise families and pay taxes in every corner of our Commonwealth.”

McAuliffe said he is certain he has the legal authority for this massive extension of voting rights after consulting with legal and constitutional experts, including Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring.

The governor’s action means that every Virginia felon who has completed their sentence and finished any supervised release, parole or probation requirements as of April 22 will be able to vote, run for public office, serve on a jury and become a notary public.

…And use the ladies’ public restrooms too, no doubt.