Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Alabama Inmates Registering to Vote in Prison

Ala. inmates registering to vote in prison
9/16/2008, 2:48 p.m. CDT
The Associated Press

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Alabama inmates are registering to vote in prison in a new effort organized by activist groups with the cooperation of state corrections officials.

Nearly 80 prisoners have filled out registration forms so far during voter drives at two lockups on Monday and Tuesday. Organizer Kenneth Glasgow plans to help them and hundreds more obtain absentee ballots in time to vote in November.

The state attorney general's office issued an opinion seven years ago saying inmates could vote using absentee ballots. But confusion and lawsuits followed over which convicted felons had the right to vote because of a murky phrase in state law.

Corrections spokesman Brian Corbett says no one has previously registered inmates to vote in state prisons.

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