Monday, January 21, 2008
This report focuses on the story of an individual who cannot vote because of a felony conviction but has done a great deal to mobilize other voters nonetheless. David Sadler is 33 years old but cannot vote because of a conviction when he was 18. Sadler claims he was falsely accused and charged with drug possession, but he accepted a plea bargain because it was the only way to quickly return to school and football without serving jail time. In 2002, he walked from Orlando, Fla., to Harrisburg, Pa. to deliver his request for clemency to the governor and his effort attracted national media attention. But then Gov. Mark Schweiker (R) denied the request. Today, Sadler is the state director for the Alabama Restore the Vote Coalition. "They took my one vote but they added 5,000 more. I'll take those odds," Sadler said, referring to the estimated 5,000 people he's helped through his work with the coalition.