Va. governor to speed rights process for nonviolent felons.

Author:Ferguson, Paige

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell announced an expedited and simplified process for nonviolent offenders to regain their voting rights, according to the Richmond Times Dispatch. This change, effective July 15, 2013, means that once a nonviolent offender in the state of Virginia has completed his or her sentence and any probation/parole, the governor will automatically send out a letter verifying the individual's restoration of rights, thereby eliminating the mandatory two-year waiting period before applying for restoration of rights and individual review by the governor. Virginia is one of only four states that still permanently disenfranchise offenders unless voting rights are restored by the governor. According to The Sentencing Project's 2012 report, there are currently about 350,000 disenfranchised ex-offenders in the state.

McDonnell's effort to streamline the state's restoration process began with his campaign for...

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