Senator Jim Holzapfel, Assemblyman Greg McGuckin, and Assemblyman Dave Wolfe (all R-Ocean) blasted a Democratic legislative proposal that would allow convicted criminals who are on parole or probation to vote in elections.
“By removing one of the important penalties associated with criminal convictions, Democrats would eliminate a significant deterrent to committing crime that could negatively impact public safety,” said Holzapfel, a former Ocean County Prosecutor. “People who have shown criminal disregard for our laws should not have a role in electing the people who write them.”
Under current State law, criminals who are on parole or probation due to a conviction for an indictable offense under federal or state laws are prohibited from voting.
Legislation (A-5823) being advanced by the General Assembly would remove that prohibition, allowing those convicted criminals to vote in primary, municipal, special, and general elections.
“This legislation is a dangerous first step by Democrats that will lead to incarcerated prisoners voting from their jail cells,” said McGuckin. “The last thing New Jersey needs is for voting booths to be wheeled down the cell block for inmates to cast their votes. It would result in politicians catering to the needs of criminals over those of law-abiding citizens.”
According to published reports, the Assembly sponsor of the measure confirmed that he next plans to work on changing the law to allow prisoners to vote.
“It’s pure insanity to give prisoners the ability to elect politicians who make campaign promises to lessen their sentences in exchange for votes,” added Wolfe. “This is all part of the false narrative being advanced by the progressive Democrats who run New Jersey that criminals are the real victims. These efforts would do nothing less than undermine the rule of law that civil society depends upon.”