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The Battle Over Voting Rights for Former Felons in Virginia

Governor Terry McAuliffe just made it possible for 13,000 former felons to vote. Will they actually be able to?
relates to The Battle Over Voting Rights for Former Felons in Virginia
Steve Helber/AP

On Monday, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe announced that he had restored the voting rights of an estimated 13,000 people who were previously unable to vote due to the state’s ban for people who have been convicted of felonies. There are still an estimated 187,000 felony-disqualified voters who need McAuliffe’s help to vote this year. But casting ballots isn’t all that’s at stake.

In Richmond, Kevin Starlings is waiting to see whether McAuliffe’s act frees up his run for the school board. Also in Richmond, Michelle R. Mosby is hoping that a signature from a person with a felony conviction on a petition that qualified her candidacy won’t be revoked. McAuliffe’s move restores former felons’ voting abilities, but it’s not yet clear what that means for people considering running for office or signing political petitions.