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Archive for Friday, March 5, 2010

Legislature set to consider bill to protect right to vote for mentally ill

March 5, 2010

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— A Kansas House committee is considering a proposed change in the state constitution to protect the voting rights of the mentally ill.

The Federal and State Affairs Committee has scheduled a hearing Tuesday on the issue Tuesday.

No existing law bars voting by Kansans with mental illness, but the state constitution still allows the Legislature to approve such a ban.

The proposed amendment would delete that provision.

Supporters say the proposal is an important gesture because many Kansans are diagnosed with conditions such as depression or bipolar disorder.

The Senate approved the measure last month. Adoption by a two-thirds majority in the House would put it on the Nov. 2 ballot for approval by a simple majority of voters.

Comments

Sunny Parker 4 years, 11 months ago

There are enough mentally ill in congress.

No one that isn't a tax payer should be able to even vote!

Satirical 4 years, 11 months ago

I thought the mentally ill already had the right to vote. Aren't they also called Democrats ; )

oldvet 4 years, 11 months ago

Yeah... I thought liberals already had the right to vote... ;-)

Thinking_Out_Loud 4 years, 11 months ago

sunny, your second sentence is idiotic. Suffrage should not be afforded on the basis of wealth. Neither should it be afforded on the basis of race, religion, belief, gender, knowledge base, or social status. Citizenship should be the primary qualification for receiving the franchise.

ebyrdstarr 4 years, 11 months ago

Sunny, you might want to check out the 24th Amendment. Roughly stated, the right to vote shall not be abridged based on the failure to pay a poll tax or any other tax.

SpunKey 4 years, 11 months ago

Gotta good laugh on this headline..... I think we already vote for mentall ill - they are only ones running for office!

beatrice 4 years, 11 months ago

Well, isn't that "special."

Tea (party), anyone?

georgiahawk 4 years, 11 months ago

You are right moocher, there are too many of you moochers.

rbwaa 4 years, 11 months ago

@SpunKey -- thanks for the great laugh -- i have been voting for the mentally ill for a long time...

notajayhawk 4 years, 11 months ago

cheeseburger (anonymous) says…

"I don't have a problem with minimally mentally-challenged persons exercising the constitutional right to vote, but I see no wording that delineates those from the severely mentally-challenged who have no conception of what they are doing when placed in a voting booth."

Actually, I believe one of the things they're trying to address is the other side of that coin. As mentioned, although it has not been used, there is provision in the constitution for barring the mentally ill from voting, and they do not delineate between 'minimally' and 'severely' ill. And when you consider that more than half the population will meet the criteria for some mental illness during their lifetime, it would seem problematic to leave in place any possibility of preventing their right to vote.

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