Khanna breaks with Sanders on voting rights for Boston Marathon bomber: 'I wouldn't go that far'

Khanna breaks with Sanders on voting rights for Boston Marathon bomber: 'I wouldn't go that far'
© Stefani Reynolds

Rep. Ro KhannaRohit (Ro) KhannaYoung insurgents aren't rushing to Kennedy's side in Markey fight Khanna: I 'didn't appreciate' Castro's attack on Biden Overwhelming majority of voters want lawmakers to work with other party MORE (D-Calif.), one of the co-chairs of Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersJimmy Carter: 'I hope there's an age limit' on presidency 2020 candidates keep fitness on track while on the trail Mark Mellman: The most important moment in history? MORE's (I-Vt.) presidential campaign, broke with the presidential candidate Wednesday on giving voting rights to the Boston Marathon bomber.

“California has a compromise where felony convictions, those who are nonviolent in county jails have the right to vote, but those who have committed violent felonies, like the Boston Marathon, don’t have the right to vote," Khanna said CNN's "New Day." 

“That to me seems like a reasonable way forward, where you’re enfranchising people but not giving someone like the Boston Marathon bomber the right to vote.”

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Host John Berman pressed Khanna on whether he was disagreeing with Sanders, who during a CNN town hall Monday defended Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's right to vote.

“I think that I wouldn’t go that far," Khanna responded. "He should have the right to be treated for cancer if he has cancer, and he should have certain human rights, but I wouldn’t go that far in terms of giving him the right to vote.”

Sanders's comments Monday have drawn some backlash.

South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegKavanaugh impeachment push hits Capitol buzz saw 2020 candidates keep fitness on track while on the trail Mark Mellman: The most important moment in history? MORE (D), who is also running for president, made clear in a town hall later that day that he does not believe convicted felons should be able to vote while incarcerated. 

Rep. Seth MoultonSeth MoultonYoung insurgents aren't rushing to Kennedy's side in Markey fight Wall Street ends volatile month in major test for Trump The Hill's Morning Report — Hurricane headed for Florida changes Trump's travel plans MORE (D-Mass.), who announced his 2020 candidacy earlier this week, also pushed back on giving felons voting rights, saying, "You're in prison, that's not a provision that we have."

Khanna on Wednesday defended restoring voting rights for at least some of those who are incarcerated.

“Sen. Sanders is talking about this because mass incarceration is an issue of racial disparity, one of out every three black men are in jail or find themselves convicted of a felony," he explained. "We have a country that has gone from incarcerating 500,000 people to 2.2 million people and this is disenfranchising for many people of color."