Voting Rights Restoration and Judicial Public Financing on the move!

Two good government bills made strides advancing from committees in both chambers this week -- HB 74 ensures that re-entering citizens are able to participate in the political process in accordance with the Constitution, and SB 160 will help justices focus on their dockets, rather than fundraising, while also preventing possible conflicts of interest.

HB 74, Felon Voting Rights Restoration, sponsored by Rep. Gail Chasey, received a “do pass” from the House Judiciary Committee on Feb. 3, by a 6-3 vote. Take a moment to thank members of both the House State Government, Elections, and Indian Affairs and the House Judiciary for advancing this crucial reform.

This was the last House committee for HB 74 and it now heads to the House floor for a vote!

HB 74 allows for a simple transaction between election offices and corrections. This simplified process addresses what has been a significant challenge to citizens upon their re-entry which has consistently failed many in their efforts to become registered to vote and participate in elections.

The U.S. Constitution guarantees every eligible citizen have the right to vote, without caveats or contingencies upon that right. No eligible citizen should be deprived of this constitutionally guaranteed right.

Please call and email your House member and ask them to support HB 74 today! 

SB 160, Judicial Candidates in Voter Action Act, Sponsored by Sens. Peter Wirth and Katy Duhigg, resoundingly received a “do pass” from its first committee hearing today in Senate Rules, passing with a 7-3 vote. SB 160 will next be scheduled for a hearing in the Senate Finance Committee.

SB 160 would expand the state’s public financing program (the Voter Action Act) to all district court judges. Public financing is one of the most effective ways to protect our judiciary from special interests and dark money, and also helps reduce conflicts of interest in the courtroom.

We know from our research that public financing for judges is a commonsense solution to ensure fair, impartial courts, an inclusive judiciary that is reflective of the community that they serve and supports a more diverse field of candidates to be able to run for office.

Thank you for your interest in following our work during this exciting legislative session.

CCNM has more priority bills that are being introduced in the Senate next week when they resume floor session on Feb. 10. We will be updating Democracy Wire on Monday, Feb 8th with information regarding more legislation that CCNM is working on this session and calls to action for our members to lend their voice of support!

Thank you and have a safe weekend!