WASHINGTON, D.C. — A new bill advanced by Democrats in the Connecticut Legislature would significantly expand voting access in the state. Senate Bill 5, which passed the state Senate on Tuesday, would expand the number of government agencies that could automatically register citizens to vote, including libraries. It would also restore voting rights on July 1 to individuals with past felony convictions who are on parole.
Democrats in the state Senate applauded the passage of the legislation, saying that efforts to expand access to voting in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic were needed to aid the return to normalcy and help improve re-integration efforts for individuals with past felony convictions by restoring their voting rights sooner. “Instituting an automatic electronic way for voters to register increases the odds for residents to access their voting rights,” said State Sen. James Maroney (D) of the effort. State Sen. Saud Anwar (D) added: “Our elections are most effective when the highest number of citizens cast their ballots and exercise their rights.”
The bill now moves to the state House for consideration.