Ocasio-Cortez backs giving prisoners voting rights

Ocasio-Cortez backs giving prisoners voting rights
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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezKamala Harris, Stacey Abrams among nominees for Time magazine's 2020 Person of the Year Ocasio-Cortez, Cruz trade jabs over COVID-19 relief: People 'going hungry as you tweet from' vacation Biden Cabinet picks largely unify Democrats — so far MORE (D-N.Y.) on Thursday voiced her support for giving incarcerated felons voting rights, while warning opponents they risked “looking completely + utterly out of touch w/ the reality [of] our prison system.”

"To avoid looking completely + utterly out of touch w/ the reality our prison system: Instead of asking, “Should the Boston Bomber have the right to vote?” Try, “Should a nonviolent person stopped w/ a dime bag LOSE the right to vote?” Bc that question reflects WAY more people," Ocasio-Cortez tweeted.

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersClyburn: Biden falling short on naming Black figures to top posts Prepare for buyers' remorse when Biden/Harris nationalize health care Biden: 'Difficult decision' to staff administration with House, Senate members MORE (I-Vt.) sparked a national discussion about voting rights for felons in jail during a CNN town hall Monday.


The 2020 presidential candidate said that all prisoners, including domestic terrorists such as the Boston Marathon bomber, should retain the right to vote.

"I think the right to vote is inherent to our democracy," he said. "Yes, even for terrible people, because once you start chipping away ... you’re running down a slippery slope. ... I do believe that even if they are in jail, they’re paying their price to society, but that should not take away their inherent American right to participate in our democracy.” 

Although Sanders previously called for felon voting rights, the comments Monday drew national attention and backlash.

Some candidates, including former Rep. Beto O'RourkeBeto O'RourkeMexican president breaks with other world leaders, refusing to acknowledge Biden win until election is finalized Mexico emerging as foreign policy challenge for Biden Beyoncé sports pro-Biden mask on Instagram MORE (D-Texas) and former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro, have said only nonviolent offenders should be able to vote while in prison.

Ocasio-Cortez did not immediately respond to a request for clarification on whether she was backing voting rights for all felons or just nonviolent ones.