newsyoungkin taking small steps toward restoring voting rights of ex felons

Youngkin taking small steps toward restoring voting rights of ex-felons

Chris Graham
glenn youngkin
(© Michael Robb Photography – Shutterstock)

The Office of Gov. Glenn Youngkin said Friday that the governor has restored the civil rights of more than 800 Virginians who will be able to vote in the Nov. 8 general election.

The action restoring the voting rights of people who had lost those rights after being convicted of felonies comes ahead of Monday’s voter-registration deadline for the 2022 election.

“Second chances are essential to ensuring Virginians who have made mistakes are able to move forward toward a successful future. I am proud of the efforts made by these formerly incarcerated Virginians to regain their civil rights,” Youngkin said. “I applaud those who have committed to starting fresh with renewed values and a will to positively contribute to our society.”

The administration, according to a press release, will continue to restore rights on an ongoing basis. Individuals who want more information or would like to apply to have their rights restored should visit:

Applicants waiting for rights to be restored may check the status of their application online.

Youngkin’s predecessors, Ralph Northam and Terry McAuliffe, were far busier with respect to restoring the voting rights of those convicted of felonies who had served their time and were working through their second chances at life.

McAuliffe restored the rights of more than 173,000 Virginians in his tenure, between 2014-2018, and Northam did so for more than 126,000 Virginians between 2018-2022.

“Virginians are forgiving people, who believe in second chances,” Northam said, according to a press release from his office from January of this year. “When people make mistakes, and pay their debts, they deserve the opportunity to return and be productive members of society. We can all be proud that Virginia has been able to provide thousands of deserving people the opportunity for a fresh start.”

That release also noted that Northam had granted pardons to over 1,200 Virginians over the past four years – including exonerating eight individuals who served lengthy prison sentences after being wrongfully convicted for crimes that they did not commit.

Chris Graham

Chris Graham

Chris Graham is the editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1994 alum of the University of Virginia, Chris has won 17 Virginia Press Association awards for his work as an investigative reporter, feature writer and columnist. Chris is the author and co-author of seven books, including Poverty of Imagination and Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, both published in 2019, and The Worst Wrestling Pay-Per-View Ever, published in 2018. For his commentaries on news, sports and politics, go to my YouTube page, Want to reach Chris? Try [email protected].