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Jail Inmates Are Not Imprisoned?

Article II, section 4 of the California Constitution provides:  "The Legislature shall ... provide for the disqualification of electors while mentally incompetent or imprisoned or on parole for the conviction of a felony."

Clear enough, right?  Traditionally, people sentenced to imprisonment for a felony went to state prison, while those sentenced to imprisonment for misdemeanors went to county jail.  With California's "realignment" fiasco, the lower level felons are going to county jail, but they are obviously still "imprisoned ... for conviction of a felony."

Well, it wasn't obvious to the ACLU and various other groups who thought they saw an opportunity to increase the number of people who will reliably vote for soft-on-crime candidates.  They asked the Court of Appeal for the First District (SF region) to order the Secretary of State to let the "realigned" felons vote.  They urged the court not to interpret the Constitution and laws "literally," i.e., to mean what they plainly say.

The court didn't buy it.  Yesterday it summarily dismissed the case, All of Us or None v. Bowen, A134775.

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