NC Governor Signs Unnecessary Voter ID Bill Into Law (VIDEO)
Matt | On 13, Aug 2013
North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory, a Republican, has signed into law one of the most restrictive voter ID bills ever seen in the country. He is clearly aiming to set the state back 150 years by trying to keep all groups that don’t vote Republican away from the ballot box.
McCrory released the above video upon signing the bill to try to explain away how he and his conservative allies want to suppress the vote in the Tarheel State. The governor said that it’s Democrats who are overblowing the situation and less access to voting shouldn’t be an issue.
Here are a few lowlights of the bill and what it restricts:
- Requires government-issued ID for all voters. Student IDs from state universities are not acceptable.
- Straight-ticket voting has ended. This allowed people to click one button and vote for everyone in the same party.
- Early voting period is cut from 17 to 10 days.
- Preregistration for teens who will be 18 by Election Day has ended.
- Same-day voter registration has been axed. This is especially troubling for the teens who turn 18 on or immediately before Election Day.
Observers note that changes to the ID requirements and early voting disproportionately target black voters, who in large do not support the Republican Party. Others have noticed that Latinos and youth voters, also part of the Democratic base, have been caught in the crosshairs of this law. The legislation goes into effect in 2016.
McCrory and the state of North Carolina have not won their battle just yet. The U.S. Department of Justice may swoop in and declare the law unconstitutional. This can be done if they hold the law up against Section 3 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. That section allows the U.S. attorney general to put a stop to the law if it’s deemed to have infringed on the rights of voters.
Protesters hosted what is called Moral Mondays in Raleigh to speak out against the fringe GOP lawmakers running the state. For 13 straight weeks during the recent legislative session, government officials were met with hundreds of people descending on the legislative complex in anger. Over 800 people were arrested, but the fringe kept rolling on. Now that the session has ended until May 2014, Moral Monday is moving to Charlotte on August 19.
The NAACP, American Civil Liberties Union, and others will be challenging the law in federal court. This fight is far from over.