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Des Moines BLM Disappointed After Meeting With Governor on Felon Voting Rights

Des Moines BLM Disappointed After Meeting With Governor on Felon Voting Rights
Des Moines BLM Disappointed After Meeting With Governor on Felon Voting Rights

DES MOINES, Iowa — Gov. Kim Reynolds met Monday with Des Moines Black Lives Matter, following a meeting Friday where the organizers say Reynolds said she would have a draft prepared for an executive order restoring felon voting rights.

The group left the meeting disappointed, saying Reynolds showed up empty-handed and told them it would take until late summer/early fall to draft the language.

“She admitted to us that was bad communication and that she was just not ready to do that. She said she slept all weekend, trying to think about how she can make it work, and she didn’t have a way to come up with language in two or three days,” said Matt Bruce, an organizer with Des Moines Black Lives Matter.

Although they say Reynolds committed to signing an executive order before the election, the group says that’s not good enough.

“Our problem is with her process that she says is going to take two or three months. It’s a process that hasn’t included us. It’s a process of organizations and lobbyists and representatives and public officials, but none of those are the people themselves. I’m not hired out by anybody. None of these guys have been hired out by anybody,” said Bruce.

As a result, Des Moines Black Lives Matter is creating a coalition to draft the executive order themselves and bring it to Reynolds. Bruce says their goal is to make sure felons not only have the right to vote, but that they can also get access to IDs and get education on the process in time for November’s election.

The governor’s office did not respond to a request for comment on Monday’s meeting.