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The Democrat governor of Virginia, a swing state in the upcoming presidential election, just made a move to try to give his party an edge.
On Friday Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced that he has made an executive order that will allow more than 200,000 convicted felons to vote and run for office, the Associated Press reported.
McAuliffe indicated he made the move to stop the suppression of the black vote.
“Too often in both our distant and recent history, politicians have used their authority to restrict people’s ability to participate in our democracy. Today we are reversing that disturbing trend and restoring the rights of more than 200,000 of our fellow Virginians, who work, raise families and pay taxes in every corner of our Commonwealth,” he said in a statement.
That’s one way to spin an attempt to try to skew an election in a state where President Obama defeated Mitt Romney by merely 4 percentage points, according to MSNBC.
Republicans in the commonwealth saw right through McAuliffe’s blanket change.
His “decision to issue a blanket restoration, without regard to the nature of the crimes committed, doesn’t speak of mercy,” John Whitbeck, chairman of the Virginia GOP, said “Rather, it speaks of political opportunism,” the Wall Street Journal reported.
Although it remains to be seen how many of the said felons will bother to vote the motivation for the order was blatantly obvious.
“If you look at the makeup of the population being affected by this development, it’s definitely a Democratic-leaning demographic,” Geoffrey Skelley, an analyst at the University of Virginia Center for Politics, told the Journal. “But it’s important not to overstate this. … It’s difficult to know how many of these individuals will register.”
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