Governor Continues Pro-Criminal Run for White House

A legislative column from Assemblyman Clifford W. Crouch (R-Bainbridge)
April 23, 2018

Last week Gov. Cuomo signed an Executive Order giving parolees the right to vote without consulting the legislature. This continues a left leaning pro-criminal agenda he has been pushing over the last few years which included pardoning two cop killers, Herman Bell and Judith Clark, as well as an initiative to give prisoners tablets. This newest push would give over 35,000 individuals the right to vote, regardless of their crimes, or proof they are rehabilitated and have made real steps toward rejoining society.

Right now a process already exists that allows parolees who have made the necessary steps toward rehabilitation to be able to vote after proving they are ready to rejoin society. This process is known as a Conditional Pardon and can be granted to an individual by the governor. To treat all parolees in this way is unimaginable. Does this mean a violent felon or rapist can get out and vote while they are on parole? What about the victims of the crimes that these individuals committed, or their families? Do criminals come before them?

These individuals made a choice and broke the law, they forfeited their right to vote until their prison sentences are served, and parole is an extension of those sentences.

This isn’t the first time this governor has pushed for far left-leaning policies. Earlier this year, he announced an initiative that would grant prisoners the use of tablets while serving their sentences. Over the last few years, he has even pardoned a number of individuals who committed violent crimes against police officers. Last year it was Judith Clark, this year Herman Bell, a man who brutally executed, tortured and killed two police officers.

To say we need criminal justice reform is one thing, but to pardon cop killers and allow all parolees the right to vote is out of touch. This shows how far left our governor is willing to go to win votes and re-election. He put criminals and violent offenders before law-abiding citizens. This is outright disrespectful to the Legislature and the very people it represents.

I cannot support this initiative and will do everything in my power to ensure it will not become law.