"In this state when you're released from prison and you're on parole you still don't have the right the right to vote". Instead, Cuomo will direct state corrections officials to review a list of former inmates now subject to parole supervision.
By issuing an executive order, Cuomo was able to sidestep the state Legislature, where the Republican leaders of the state Senate could have blocked the move.
That means Cuomo will pardon 35,000 people who are on parole in NY, along with anyone released on parole going forward.
Across the country, voting laws vary widely when it comes to the incarcerated. Myrna Perez, deputy director of the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University Law School, called it "an enormous step forward". The new law would also provide rights to each of the new convicted felons who enter the parole system every month. ME and Vermont already allow people to vote from prison.
The conditional pardons relate only to voting rights. They are among 18 states and Washington, D.C., that allow parolees to vote, according to the Times, which cites information from the governor's office.
The order is likely to anger Republicans in the Senate, who Cuomo claimed have stood in the way of efforts to approve the change legislatively.
The second-term governor is facing a spirited Democratic primary challenge from "Sex and the City" star Cynthia Nixon, who has faulted Cuomo for not doing enough to help minorities. But he said he wouldn't wait that long.
A demonstrator holds a sign during a rally to demand voting reform in NY on March 18, 2018.
That was before Nixon made the IDC's control of state government a major part of her early campaign, essentially forcing Cuomo to take action.
Sen. Patrick Gallivan (R-NY-59) believes the right shouldn't be restored during parole. But he said the Democratic Party got it wrong in 2016. We don't buy the governor's new song-and-dance routine.