Should prisoners be able to vote?

Sarah - posted on 02/10/2011 ( 22 moms have responded )

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The Government has proposed giving the prisoners the right to vote following a ruling by the European Court of Human Rights, which said the 140-year-old blanket ban was unlawful.
The prospect of granting the vote to more than 28,000 prisoners - including 6,000 violent offenders, 1,700 convicted of sex crimes and more than 4,000 burglars - sparked fury on Tory back benches when the four-year cut-off was floated in December.
Today's vote has also become a rallying issue for Tory Eurosceptics, many of whom would like to see the Government withdraw from the European Convention on Human Rights.



In a debate in the Commons ahead of the vote David Davis said convicted prisoners "have broken their contract with society" and should not be given the right to vote.
He added that the courts will have to "think again" if MPs decide inmates should not be able to visit the ballot box.
Mr Straw told the House: "In 32 years in this House, of the hundreds of complaints from prisoners with which I have dealt, neither I nor my staff can even recall one letter from a real prisoner calling for the right to vote from prison - not one."


What do you think? Should prisoners have the right to vote?

I would say.........HELL NO!

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Lucy - posted on 02/11/2011

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I think that during the time they are in custody- No, they should not have the right to vote. The point of prison is twofold, in my opinion-

1. rehabilitation. I encourage the idea that inmates should be educated, have the chance to gain qualification, get therapy related to their anti-social behaviour etc.
2. Punishment. Being totally withdrawn from interacting with society is intended to deter prisoners from further offending behaviour.

If they are allowed to vote, therefore interacting with and potentially influencing society at large, it undermines the punishment element of prison.

Once they have served their time, they should once more be granted the right to vote. Everyone deserves a fresh start, but they should have to do the hard work first.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 02/10/2011

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Nope. They have been taken away all of their rights as citizens. I do not think they should be given back such a large responsiblitity when they cannot even take a stroll in a park, or have a drink, or work. Nope. Once imprisoned, their rights have been impounded.

Sara - posted on 02/10/2011

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The thing is, i didn't think the right to vote given to you was something that was dependent upon your ability to follow the rules of society. I understand no wanting to give prisoners the right to vote, but I really don't think I agree wtih it.

Amanda - posted on 02/10/2011

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I think they should have the right to vote (keeping in mind that just because they have the right, doesn't mean they will exercise it). Plenty of individuals commit crimes without going to prison (probation etc...) and without thier right to vote being revoked. I just don't see it as an issue

Sarah - posted on 02/10/2011

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I think if you've committed a crime then all your rights (bar basic human ones such as food and water etc) should be revoked until they have repaid their debt to society.

So yeah, I think they are undeserving of certain rights until they are released.

22 Comments

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Krissy - posted on 02/12/2011

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No, don't we spend enough money housing and feeding them? Now we have to be responsible for creating a secure voting facility in the prison or safely transporting them to one...

No... I think maybe they have a right to their opinions, but not necessarily the right to vote as some one else will foot the bill. If they had wanted to keep having the right to vote in our society, maybe they shouldn't have committed a crime against it.

Desiree - posted on 02/11/2011

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I also say NO!! why should prisoners be given the right to vote and a right to say in whats going on in government. That means they then have a right to say what their sentences should be. Sorry but sometimes the Human rights activists should just shut up. I am all for Human rights but not when it infringes on victims rights and that of the innocent. I am sick of hearing about how prisoners rights are more important than that of the man who tried to protect his family. I live in a country where corruption and greed are the norm, the criminal is more protected than I am. No you commit the crime you have to do the time and that does not include voting.

Katherine - posted on 02/10/2011

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What about when they get out of jail? Some still don't have the right in some states.

[deleted account]

I'm in the no crowd.
My, i really ahte this term becaus ei hate the guy but i'll use it on here so people know who i mean, BIL is in prison right now. When he got sent there he got taken straight from the court room, didn't get the chance to say goodbye to his parents sister or aything. His daughter got taken into him by a police man so he could say goodbye to her. He is getting what he should get for breaking the law. I am so sick to death of hearing about poor him por him poor us we didn't get to say good bye bl;ah blah fucking blah.
They break the law bad enough to be in jail so they loose their rights to everything except food and water IMO.
Harsh because it comes from a personal experience happening now.

Katherine - posted on 02/10/2011

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http://www.idebate.org/debatabase/topic_...

Much controversy in the USA results from the fact that, in some states, people who have been in prison are banned from voting for the rest of their lives, even after they have fully served their sentences. This is especially controversial in Florida, given the closeness of the 2000 presidential election result there and the fact that a disproportionately large number of ex-convicts are black or Hispanic (statistically, more likely to be Democrat voters). One in forty Americans of voting age are ineligible to vote because they are, or have been, in prison. The arguments below relate directly to whether those currently serving prison sentences should be allowed to vote, but could readily be adjusted for a debate about whether ex-convicts should have this right.

Bonnie - posted on 02/10/2011

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I don't feel they need the right to vote. They are in prison for a reason and their world now revolves around the prison. I don't see the benefit to them to be able to vote.

Jenny - posted on 02/10/2011

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Sure, voting doesn't make any difference anyway. It's all two different side sof the same coin.

Stifler's - posted on 02/10/2011

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Yes, since the laws governing the country have them locked up. What if they were wrongly convicted? They're still human beings, there are a lot of sickos who haven't been caught out there voting.

Rosie - posted on 02/10/2011

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this is weird to me, but i think they should be allowed to vote. exception would be someone who is spending the rest of their life in prison. weird, i'm all for the death penalty, but letting them vote i'm ok with. i confuse myself sometimes. :)

Sara - posted on 02/10/2011

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I don't really understand why the right was taken away in the first place. Aren't they repaying their debt to society by serving time in prison in the first place? Does committing a crime make you less of a person, and someone undeserving of rights?

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