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Clemency Board Defers Decision On Pardon For Desmond Meade

Desmond Meade
Desmond Meade was the driving force behind the passage last November of Amendment 4, restoring the voting rights of Floridians convicted of a felony who have served their sentence.

Florida Rights Restoration Coalition executive director Desmond Meade was instrumental in restoring voting rights for former felons.  

The Florida Clemency Board has deferred a decision on granting a full pardon to Florida Rights Restoration Coalition executive director Desmond Meade.  

Meade has become the public face of the fight to restore voting rights for Floridians who have completed sentences for felony convictions. 

Gov. Ron DeSantis and state CFO Jimmy Patronis said they wanted more information about a domestic violence incident and a court martial. 

Meade has overcome homelessness and drug addiction, graduated law school and was named one of the 100 most influential people in 2019 by Time Magazine for his work on voter rights restoration. 

“That still did not appear to be enough for the governor and cabinet to say yes, Desmond, we see that you have changed your life around, we see that you have dedicated your life to giving back to the community, and therefore we are going to grant you a pardon. They didn’t do that,” said Meade after the hearing.

Meade says thanks to the passage of Amendment 4, he isable to vote, but he can’t practise law or sit on a jury.  

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Matthew Peddie