Congressman Al Lawson; Felons' Voting Rights; 100 Years Of Women’s Suffrage

Aug 18, 2020

 


 

Democratic North Florida Congressman Al Lawson, who is running for reelection in Florida’s 5th Congressional District, joined us to discuss the Florida primary election, vote by mail concerns, the Democratic National Convention, and more.

Lawson, who plans to return to Washington. D.C. later this week to address the USPS crisis, said the postal service is an essential system that delivers prescription medication to the elderly, an increasing number of ballots due to COVID-19, and mail for the most vulnerable.

 

“The postal system is not there to make a profit. It is there to provide a service you know, for everyone,” he said on First Coast Connect with Melissa Ross.

 

Lawson added that senators across the aisle are opposed to President Donald Trump’s plan to dismantle the USPS.

 

“Well, I think we've seen a lot of movement for many of the senators, Republican senators that really don't go along with the president's philosophy, simply due to the fact that it affects people, you have to really kind of take politics out of this, when you look at the number of people across America that it affects and you know, we have a lot of elderly citizens,” he said.

 

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Felons' Voting Rights

As voters head to the polls to cast their ballot in the state’s primary elections, one group of Florida residents is still fighting for the right to vote.

 

Almost one million Floridians with a prior felony conviction regained their right to vote through Amendment 4 in 2018. After the amendment was passed, the state added a provision saying that returning citizens needed to pay off their fines and fees before they could register to vote, which has resulted in an ongoing court battle.

 

We spoke to Sam Levine, a reporter with The Guardian, who recently published a deep dive into Amendment 4 and its effect on Florida's elections.

 

A Centennial Of Women’s Suffrage

The Women’s Center of Jacksonville hosted a “Thrive! 100/25,” online party Tuesday, celebrating their 25th anniversary and 100 years since the ratification of the 19th Amendment. The late Mary A. Nolan, a Jacksonville native, picketed in front of the White House in 1917 for women’s right to vote. She faced 10 arrests and was jailed five times before the 19th Amendment was ratified. She cast her ballot at age 78.

 

We spoke to the Center’s Executive Director Teresa Miles about the centennial and the importance of the Jacksonville Women’s Center.

Katherine Hobbs can be reached at newsteam@wjct.org or on Twitter at  @KatherineGHobbs.