S en. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Said on Monday that "terrible people" like the Boston Marathon bomber and offenders convicted of sexual assault are allowed to vote.
In a CNN New Hampshire town hall, a Harvard junior Sanders asked if he supported the right to vote for all convicted offenders, including Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 25, who had been killed because of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing , was sentenced to death and wounded more than 260. The presidential candidate of the Democrats said earlier this month that he believes convicted criminals should be able to vote even if they are still behind bars.
In response to the question, Sanders affirmed his belief in a "living democracy." He expressed concern about the policies of Republican governors, which he believed could oppress voters, and backed his belief that criminals had the right to choose prison.
"If someone commits a serious crime, sexual assault or murder, he will be punished," he said. "You could be in jail for 1
Most states prohibit voting crimes during their time in jail or for life, but Maine and Vermont, Sanders' home state, allow the inmates to choose from jail Democratic governors in New York and Virginia have been leading the effort in recent years to restore voting rights to offenders who are not in jail.
Sanders is in polls at around 22.5% in national polls, according to the RealClearPolitics survey average, behind Vice President Joe Biden.