Can a convicted felon vote in California?






It is well known that anyone with a felony conviction cannot vote in elections. It’s been an issue for many years. Some think it’s wrong, some think it’s right, and others are indifferent. It’s a big issue in the Black community since most of us make up the majority of inmates.

Once I served my time at Herlong Prison Camp, I just assumed that since I was a felon that I wasn’t allowed to vote. It dawned on me that I couldn’t vote for the rest of my life. Honestly, that didn’t bother me. To be transparent, I have never voted. I know that may make my Black “brothas” and “sistahs” cringe considering our history concerning voting, but I have never believed in the political process of determining America’s leaders. I don’t believe my vote truly makes a difference. This argument is a subject for another day and another post, so let me get back to voting with a felony.

After doing some research and reading, I found out that I could have voted in the November 2012 election. According to

“Felon voting has not been regulated federally although some argue that Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act can be applied to felon disenfranchisement and that Congress has the authority to legislate felon voting in federal elections.”

This means that states currently have the right to restrict your voting privilege.  However most states only restrict you for a certain period of time. It is usually until after your prison sentence, parole, or probation is complete. Once you’re done with that you can most likely vote. There have only been a small number of people that have completely lost their voting privilege. You can find a lot more information on Also, click here to view a chart by state that tells you when you can vote.

What’s your thoughts on voting after prison? Let me know in the comment section.