By: Rhiana Huckins Email
By: Rhiana Huckins Email

Reverend Kenneth Glasgow of the ordinary people society here in Dothan spent 14 years in prison on drug related charges.

His voting rights were restored in 2004 and ever since, he's been pushing for inmates to exercise their rights.

In an effort to register more inmates to vote, reverend Kenneth Glasgow left a stack of voter registration forms at the Houston county jail.

Only now since the Alabama department of corrections is asking him to stop, he is not sure if they will be used.

Alabama republican chairman mike Hubbard says he is concerned with voter fraud and does not support inmate’s rights to vote.

"The president of the united states- being the top republican in the country signed off on the second chance act for re-integration and re-entry and supports ex felon’s restoration rights," says Reverend Glasgow.

The state of Alabama says inmates can vote using an absentee ballot if they have been convicted of a misdemeanor offense.

Inmates also have the right to vote if they're convicted of felonies that do not involve moral turpitude like a as dui, drug possession, or trespassing.

"I’m starting to learn that there is a difference between human beings and humane beings the only people we are registering are people with non violent victimless crimes," says Glasgow.

The Alabama department of corrections did not have anyone locally who could talk to news 4 on camera, but gladly e-mailed a copy of Commissioner Richard Allen’s letter to mike Hubbard.

A portion of that letter read:

"Section 36-12-61 of the Code of Alabama makes it unlawful to use any state-owned property of any character to promote or advance candidates for election. While it is not clear that assisting voters to register would violate those provisions, I cannot expose departmental employees to that possibility."

Some local residents how they feel about inmates having the right to vote:

"They obviously broke the law and that is why they are in prison and once you do that, you no longer have any rights," said Allison Kenny, a Cottonwood Resident

"You got to understand that they do not follow the system, so why should their opinion matter when they really do not care about it?" says Nick Gabbrielli, a Dothan Resident.

"I think they have the right to vote, because they are still humans, still people, some of them did a few things wrong, but they are going to be released back into society so I think they should be able to vote and have an opinion of what goes on in the society." Says Penny Durham, a Dothan Resident

And Commissioner Allen says those registering the inmates didn't have to be there.

He says the inmates could register to vote on their own.

But he also says having dozens of volunteers or the even candidates appear in a correctional facility defeats the purpose of prison.

For now, the only action that the Alabama department of corrections can take against those holding inmate voter registration drives... Is to ask them to stop coming into the jails.

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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Jessica Location: Virginia on Jan 3, 2011 at 09:05 AM
    Wow ok. It is obvious that you all are very uneducated, pessimistic, and down right selfish. Who are you to say if an person should have their right to vote or not. Apparently you are seeing the situation from the outside. If you were convicted for a crime you regret, you get all rights taken away from you. The ability to see daylight, your family, your children, cannot get a job, and end up not being able to vote. Where is the sympathy, I know they need to serve their time but if they show result of that are rehabilitated during their sentence, why not give them the right to vote? There is nothing they can do to mess up the polls, so why cant they vote? Put yourself in that position and then comment. Thank You.
  • by Sybil Location: Dothan on Sep 20, 2008 at 10:37 PM
    I don't think that the inmates have a right to vote. They lost that right when they took it upon them selves to commit the crimes that they did. You do the crime you do the time ..
  • by stanley Location: enterprise on Sep 20, 2008 at 12:52 PM
    Inmates should not be able to vote. After they get out they can vote, after they have served their time.
  • by Anonymous on Sep 20, 2008 at 09:38 AM
    We should just kill them. Final solution to the country's massive crime problem.
  • by Josh Location: South on Sep 20, 2008 at 02:13 AM
    No Way!!!! As an inmate you have limited rights, you gave up your rights when you purposely broke the law. Now days there letting them out before the door gets shut good anyway. They can vote when they get out. They shouldnt have killed, robbed, assaulted, smoked dope, sold dope, resisted arrest, passed counterfeit money, forged someone elses checkes, or the half a million other crimes against humanity. If you wanted to keep the right to vote you should do what all the rest of law abiding people do. OBEY THE LAW!!!!
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