Bill Aims to Keep Voting Rights for People with Disabilities

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) —

State lawmakers are advancing a bill designed to keep voting rights for people with disabilities.

SB589 would make it clear that those who are under a court guardianship because of disabilities are presumed to be mentally competent to vote unless a judge specifically finds that they are incapable of voting even with reasonable accommodations.

The measure by Sen. Marty Block, a Democrat from San Diego, was approved days after the U.S. Department of Justice announced it is investigating whether California is denying voting rights to those under conservatorships.

Republican Sen. Jeff Stone of Temecula objected that some who are physically able to vote still may lack the capacity to understand the significance of their vote.

The measure passed the Senate, 27-10, on Friday, and now goes to the Assembly.

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