The 470,000 Potential Voters Most Likely To Be Disenfranchised Next Election

The Marshall Project

Jailed voters “have the most direct vantage on how local elected officials—judges, prosecutors, sheriffs—are actually doing their jobs,” said Dana Paikowsky, a jail voting expert at the Campaign Legal Center, a legal advocacy organization. “From the perspective of democratic accountability, this is one of the most important segments of our electorate.” Paikowsky notes research suggesting that many Americans are discouraged from future civic participation if they spend even a few days behind bars, making jail voter registration crucial to the long-term health of a democracy.

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