HuffPost: Roy Moore Criticizes Effort To Make Sure All Eligible Voters Can Vote In Alabama
At the turn of the 20th century, Alabama passed a law blocking anyone convicted of a crime of moral turpitude from casting a ballot, a measure that was used largely to keep African-Americans off the voting rolls. After the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the lawin 1985, the state narrowed its scope to felonies of moral turpitude and reinserted it in the state constitution.
But that state never provided a clear definition of what those felonies were. The ambiguity left local election officials with broad discretion to decide what crimes would block people from voting, and the law was applied inconsistently across the state. Last year, Alabama was sued on the grounds the law was unconstitutionally vague and racially discriminatory.
“This is not a Democratic or Republican issue; it’s a democracy issue with a lower case d,” said Danielle Lang, a Campaign Legal Center lawyer who spent last week in Alabama holding these clinics.
“A bipartisan majority of the Alabama Legislature passed a law defining for the first time in decades who has the right to vote and who does not,” she wrote in an email. ”... Pursuant to that law, we are making sure that every lawful voter knows about their rights since the Secretary of State has done a dismal job of that. All candidates should want to compete on a fair playing field where all eligible voters are able to participate.”