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harlem, usa
same-gender-loving contemporary descendant of enslaved africans. community activist, feminist, health educator, independent filmmaker, mentor, playwright, poet & spiritual being. featured at, in & on africana.com, afrikan poetry theatre, angel herald, bejata dot com, bet tonight with tavis smiley, blacklight online, black noir, brooklyn moon cafe, gmhc's barbershop, klmo-fm, lgbt community services center, longmoor productions, nuyorican poets cafe, our corner, poz, pulse, rolling out new york, rush arts gallery, saint veronica's church, schomburg center for research in black culture, sexplorations, the citizen, the new york times, the soundz bar, the trenton times, the village voice, upn news, uzuri, venus, vibe, wbai-fm, wnyc-fm & wqht-fm. volunteered with adodi, bailey house, inc., black men's xchange-new york, colorofchange.org, drug policy alliance, east harlem tutorial program, imagenation film & music festival, presente.org, save darfur coalition, the enough project, the osborne association, the sledge group & your black world. worked on films with maurice jamal & heather murphy. writing student of phil bertelsen & ed bullins. mjt975@msn.com.

Friday, May 09, 2014

Iowa Supreme Court questions whether all felonies should lead to disenfranchisement

last month, iowa officials disclosed at least 12 iowa voters were incorrectly disenfranchised during the 2012 presidential election. this situation happened as the result of errors in the state's list of individuals ineligible to vote due to a felony conviction.

the 12 iowans were flagged when they registered at polling stations and cast provisional ballots to be counted if they proved eligibility, but those ballots were later rejected. the ap stated the state's announcement "shows that elections and court officials have struggled to track voter eligibility due to record-keeping errors."

the des moines register reports an iowa state supreme court ruling has thrown into question the state's policy of disenfranchising all individuals with felony convictions. last month, the court ruled a second operating-while-intoxicated conviction did not bar former state senator tony bisignano from running for public office because he had not committed an "infamous crime." the chief justice's ruling also stated the court needs to determine whether all felonies necessarily constitute infamous crimes.

despite the high court's ruling, the state will continue to treat all felonies as infamous crimes. a spokesperson for the secretary of state's office said, "at this time, the secretary of state's office will continue to treat all felonies as barring an individual from voting or holding office unless a restoration of rights has been received by the governor." 

in addition, a black hawk county prosecutor has announced she will pursue pending cases against individuals accused of voting illegally, even though the ruling "makes it unclear whether they lost their voting rights in the first place."         

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