One gubernatorial hopeful wants to make voting easier in Kentucky.
Rocky Adkins says if governor he's going to take steps to increase voting access in the commonwealth through a variety of measures.
Adkins says Kentucky is currently one of the most restrictive in the nation when it comes to voter access.
This leads to lower turnout, Adkins says last gubernatorial election--only about 30 percent of people turned out to vote, he says if it's easier to vote--turnouts will improve.
"We need to open that up, we need to encourage people, and we need to give the flexibility they need in the very busy schedule they have," he said.
Adkins says voting needs to be extended, currently voting hours are from 6 am to 6 pm, he believes voting needs to be open later. Adkins also says early voting options needed to be increased and an automatic voter registration system needs to be in place.
"The framework that would be built around this can be build, and it needs to be built working with county clerks and working with members of the legislature. And as governor we would try to make that happen," he said.
Another aspect to his plan is restoring the voting rights for felons after they've paid their dues. Currently--House bill 91 is awaiting a vote in committee and would do just that. While the bill was heard in committee Monday it was for discussion only-but Adkins says this is something they need to see passed.
"We are one of the last states that when you pay your time, and you pay your dues your felony stays on your record and you aren't able to vote," he said. "This is affecting over 300,000 people in Kentucky. So this would be a constitutional amendment that I've voted on many times in the House chamber and it's passed by big numbers in a very bipartisan way."
Opponent Adam Edelen spoke about restoration of felon voting rights on Friday, but said he doesn't believe it needs to be done through a constitutional amendment. Adkins says he thinks if it's done through any other way it opens it up to a lawsuit.
"I think the safer avenue for us to take is through a constitutional amendment," he said. "But I can tell you I'm for looking through any avenue that we can. If there is a way outside of a constitutional amendment to do that then that would be something as governor that I would be willing to look at. But, I think the safer way that would stand up in courts and make sure we have that stone in the constitution would be the best route to take in Kentucky"