As Americans debated last year’s election, Victor Saoneda endured difficult conversations with friends and others talking about their votes.
He said, Saoneda, 31, was released from prison in October 2019, after serving a sentence for felony convictions – meaning he was unable to vote last November.
“I just felt ashamed to go with it, telling them I couldn’t vote,” Saoneda said. “I don’t feel like I’m good enough to vote.”
That move changed on Wednesday when Governor Jay Inslee signed a bill restoring the right to vote for residents in Washingtoni sentenced to automatic felony convictions after they were released from prison.
Below House bill 1078about 20,000 people will regain their right to vote, according to the state’s Reform Department.