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New Kentucky governor to sign order restoring voting rights to 100K felons

New Kentucky governor to sign order restoring voting rights to 100K felons
© Twitter/NBC Politics

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear (D) pledged to soon restore voting rights to over 100,000 people with felony convictions in his Tuesday inaugural speech.

“My faith teaches me to treat others with dignity and respect,” Beshear said outside the state Capitol, according to the Lexington Herald-Leader. “My faith also teaches forgiveness.”

“That’s why on Thursday I will sign an executive order restoring voting rights to over a hundred thousand men and women who have done wrong in the past but are doing right now. They deserve to participate in our great democracy,” he added. 

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His address reportedly did not give additional details on the order or subsequent rights restoration process. 

Just two states, Kentucky and Iowa, currently deny the right to vote to anyone convicted of a felony. In Kentucky, only the governor can give back voting rights. 

A January report from the League of Women Voters of Kentucky found that in the state, about 312,000 people are disenfranchised due to felony convictions. 

Beshear narrowly beat out former Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin (R) for the role in an election in November. 

Beshear has previously served as Kentucky's attorney general. He was sworn in as governor on Tuesday