“People make a mistake, they should have to pay for their mistake,” said Yulay Gafta, also from Albany.
On Facebook, many viewers posted their thoughts on the NewsChannel 13 page. One person said, “No. They gave up that right when convicted. Sorry. This is a very sad Democratic ploy for voters.”
Another wrote, “Dems trying to pick up 35-thousand votes from the criminal element! Good go boys! Cuomo needs to go.”
To the naysayers who say the order is all about votes, Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple says don’t panic just yet. He thinks you won’t see the felons rushing to the polls.
“I think some of the last things they’re looking for is the ability to vote. They’re looking for some stability, a job, whatever to get out there and try to have a sustainable life,” said Apple.
Apple cites current voting trends within the Albany County Jail. On average, about 600 inmates each year still have the right to vote.
“The jail inmate service unit does an awesome job getting it out to everybody that listen, this is your right, you can vote. You can do this because if they’re not convicted, they can still vote and one to two people will ask for an absentee. That’s all,” said Apple.
A big believer in second chances, Apple says he supports the governor’s decision, but feels the issue warranted a little more discussion.
“Let’s not be confused that there are some bad people out there killing people, raping people, stealing from people. I don’t think they’re gonna take the time to go vote,” said Apple.