ThinkTN in the News: Don’t do it, Tennessee: Voter registration proposal a step back for civil rights.

The Tennessean (April, 24, 2019) — Tennessee leaders must do everything they can to encourage more, not less voter participation. A bill that punishes voter registration drives could derail the progress Tennessee has made on voter turnout by introducing unnecessary penalties into the process.  Worse, it could discourage voters who already feel marginalized because of the United States’ and Tennessee’s past history of voter suppression. The Tennessee House of Representatives passed the bill on April 15 and the state …

ThinkTN in the News: Groups, Republican lawmakers seek to restore voting rights for Tennesseans with felony convictions

The Chattanooga Times Free Press (Feb. 14, 2019) —  In a state where an estimated 323,354 felons have completed their criminal sentences, two Republican lawmakers and a coalition of groups are pressing a bill to streamline what they describe as Tennessee’s “onerous” current process for restoring felons’ voting rights. “We’re not creating a new eligibility class at all,” Rep. Michael Curcio, R-Dickson, said Wednesday at a news conference. “These are folks we’ve already said, with …

ThinkTN in the News: Tennessee Republicans, ACLU join forces to help more felons regain right to vote

The Tennessean (Feb. 14, 2019) — Two Republican lawmakers, with the backing of the American Civil Liberties Union, are setting out to make it simpler for people with felony convictions to regain their right to vote, a process more arduous in Tennessee than in most states. Tennessee’s rights restoration laws are among the strictest in the country. It is one of 12 states that requires individuals with felony convictions to complete multiple steps beyond serving their …

ThinkTN in the News: Tennessee considers easing felon voting rights restoration

Associated Press (Feb. 13, 2019) — Tennessee lawmakers are considering a move to make it easier for some felons to get their voting rights restored. The legislation would lift the Republican-led state’s unique requirement for formerly incarcerated individuals to be up-to-date on child support before restoration of voting rights, in addition to other court fines and restitution. It would also aim to simplify the bureaucratic process for those people to get their rights back once …

Report Finds Individuals, Society Would Benefit from Restoration of Voting Rights in Tennessee

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (February 12, 2019) – Tennessee bars people with a felony conviction from voting at a higher rate than nearly every other state (ranked #48), which comes at great cost to both individuals and society, according to a new policy brief released today by ThinkTennessee, Americans For Prosperity and Project Return. The sixth in ThinkTennessee’s State of Our State dashboard series, the findings reveal how rights restoration can help reduce recidivism while saving taxpayer …