rick ruddell sends word of voting in canadian prisons on friday. incarcerated citizens have been eligible to vote in that nation since 2002, when the supreme court of canada ruled that barring prisoners from voting was contrary to the canadian charter of rights and freedoms. according to ctv, about 25 percent of 35,000 eligible prisoners were expected to cast ballots.
the story quotes conservative leader steven harper as saying, "no, I don't agree with prisoner voting." manitoba inmate jeff power (shown in the ctv photo at left) shaved a maple leaf and liberal 'L' into the side of his head. "We're all voting for the Liberals, just because we want to keep our vote."
here in the states, i'd imagine the republicans would adopt the canadian conservative position and the democrats would be ... skittish. only maine and vermont permit prisoners to vote today and the u.s. supreme court has generally permitted states to disenfranchise prison inmates, probationers, parolees, and even former felons who have completed their sentences.