Todd Allen Wilson
12:40 PM AKST, January 10, 2013
Sen. Don McEachin, D-Henrico, called on Gov. Bob McDonnell to name legislation that would automatically restore rights to convicted felons after the late-Sen. Yvonne Miller.
Miller, D-Norfolk, who died in July, spent two decades pushing a constitutional amendment which would automatically retore the voting rights of felons convicted of non-violent offenses who have served their time.
In his State of the Commonwealth address Wednesday McDonnell threw his support behind such legislation sponsored by freshman Dels. Greg Habeeb, R-Salem, and Peter Farrell, R-Henrico.
“Our dearly missed and loved late Sen. Yvonne Miller worked on this legislation for decades in her time in the Senate," McEachin said in a press release Thursday. "For years, long before it was popular, she advocated for these individuals with compassion and understanding. Sen. Miller was the conscience of the Virginia Senate and we all miss her wise counsel. The least we can do to commemorate her years of tireless efforts on this important issue is to name the legislation 'The Yvonne B. Miller Voter Restoration Act.' On her behalf, I promise to continue to work as hard as I can to ensure it passes.
“I call on my colleagues in both the House and Senate to vote in support of this Act, both in memory of Yvonne and because of the rightness of her cause. Let’s work with our governor and pass this legislation.”