the great legal mind wrote with an update on minnesota voting requirements. like many jurisdictions, my home state publishes a voting FAQ.
sometimes folks are skeptical when i argue that the rules are unclear or needlessly complicated. when i do so, i'm referring to passages such as this one:
Q: Who is eligible to vote?
A: You may vote if you are:
- at least 18 years of age [no problem here]
- a US citizen [check]
- a Minnesota resident for at least 20 days before the election [shouldn't be hard to figure out]
- not a convicted felon without your civil rights [hmmm. what if had been convicted but did my time?]
- not under guardianship of the person where you have not retained the right to vote [huh? HUH?]
- not legally incompetent [well, technically i'm not legally incompetent]
my research draws my attention to criterion #4, since i think such statements give former felons the erroneous impression that they cannot vote even after they are released from (probation, parole, or prison) supervision. but #5 is just bizarre. i get the sense that this rule was first translated into japanese, then into norwegian, then rewritten as english. before you vote in november, be sure to ask yourself whether you are "not under guardianship of the person where you have not retained the right to vote." and remember -- if you misinterpret the rules and vote illegally, you've just committed a felony.