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UPDATED: McDonnell meets with legislative black caucus

Rosalind Helderman

Virginia's Legislative Black Caucus had its first official sit-down meeting with Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) last week, days before McDonnell announced a new process for speeding the restoration of voting rights for felons.

Members of the caucus had complained that McDonnell's office wasn't doing enough to reach out to them on important issues. Those complaints grew after McDonnell declared April Confederate History Month and then when about 200 nonviolent felons seeking their voting rights received a letter from McDonnell's office asking them to submit a new personal statement to the governor as part of the application. McDonnell's office has said those letters were sent in error and the personal statement is not a part of the process outlined last week.

At that time, the governor's office complained the governor wanted to meet with the caucus but was having trouble getting a meeting scheduled.

It looks as if those issues have now been resolved. According to McDonnell's office, he met with 10 delegates and four senators at the governor's conference room in the state capitol last week.

As part of McDonnell's statement on voting rights last week, he announced the formation of a special working group, to include members of the caucus, to improve the process.

UPDATE 6:20 p.m.: Del. Kenny Alexander (D), chairman of the black caucus, called the meeting "very productive." He said the new restoration of rights procedure was one topic of discussion. Also good government. "It was the first meeting," he said. "There will be many more."

By Rosalind Helderman  |  May 24, 2010; 2:44 PM ET
Categories:  Robert F. McDonnell , Rosalind Helderman  
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probably thought he was meeting with Sheila's kitchen staff or something....or maybe Doug's lawn crew.....

Posted by: SofaKingCool2009 | May 24, 2010 7:46 PM | Report abuse

Restoration of rights should be at the discretion of the Governor AND to prevent abuses by an elected official, certain criteria should be set out, beforehand.

The commission of a felony is a serious matter, whether it is narcotics, robbery or homicide related.

The law is color-blind, when it comes to punsihment, between a misdemeanor and a felony and it isn't "Cash-Blind" when it comes to the payment of a fine, especially if you're white.

As the fictional "Miami Vice" character, "Sonny" Crockett says, "If you can't do the time don't commit the crime!"

Posted by: Computer_Forensics_Expert_Computer_Expert_Witness | May 24, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

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