Voting Rights For People With Disabilities Questioned
With the presidential campaign season heading into high gear, concerns are being raised about whether all people with disabilities should have the right to vote.
In Minnesota, a fight is brewing in court and in the state legislature. At issue is whether or not adults who are under the care of guardians — including many with disabilities — should be eligible to vote.
Currently, such individuals are able to cast ballots unless a judge has determined otherwise. But in a lawsuit making its way through federal court a group is arguing that the state’s constitution does not extend the right to vote to those with guardians.
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Meanwhile a proposal in the Minnesota legislature would require a judge to assess voting eligibility for people with guardians. Like those behind the lawsuit, the bill’s sponsor — who has guardianship over her own sister with a disability — said she wants to ensure that no one is being taken advantage of, citing cases where people with disabilities have allegedly been influenced by caretakers at the polls.
Disability advocates, however, are largely opposed to the proposed restrictions arguing that cases of abuse are rare and don’t justify sweeping changes, reports the Minneapolis Star Tribune. To read more click here.