MONTGOMERY, Ala. — A new bill on its way to the Alabama Senate would provide clarity over which criminal convictions would remove the voting rights of Alabama residents. Sponsored by Rep. Mike Jones (R-Andalusia), HB 282 unanimously passed in the House of Representatives thanks to the support of Republicans and Democrats.
Current Alabama law only states that those convicted of felonies involving “moral turpitude” lose the ability to vote. However, Alabama officials have had a hard time deciding what falls into that category.
The House bill specifically lists 42 different crimes that would disqualify a person from voting. Convictions for murder, forgery, crimes of moral terpitude, and several others are all included in the new definition.
Republicans have described the bill as compromise legislation. While Democrats ultimately supported the bill, Rep. John Knight (D-Montgomery) remains concerned about Alabamians losing their voting rights.