Groups mobilize against voter ID proposal

Posted January 23, 2013

— A group of left-leaning organizations said Wednesday that requiring voters to present photo identification at the polls would "stack the deck" against fair and open elections in North Carolina.

Republican legislative leaders say they plan to consider a voter ID bill when the General Assembly reconvenes next week. The GOP-controlled legislature passed an ID bill in 2011 that was vetoed by former Democratic Gov. Beverly Perdue. New Republican Gov. Pat McCrory has said he supports an ID requirement for voting.

The NAACP, the American Civil Liberties Union, Democracy North Carolina, the Southern Coalition for Social Justice and other groups are mobilizing to oppose the legislation. They have launched the ProtectOurVoteNC.com website for people to lobby lawmakers and share stories of how an ID law would hurt them, and they plan to start airing anti-voter ID public service announcements across the state this weekend.

"Why is this on the agenda at all?" Rev. William Barber, state president of the NAACP, said at a news conference. "North Carolina elections are working."

Barber noted that GOP lawmakers, including Rep. Paul Stam, R-Wake, backed a 2003 law that called for voters to provide their signature to attest their identity under penalty of a felony charge. No one has shown that the law isn't working, he said.

"There's no epidemic" of voter fraud, he said. "It's an overstatement to call it minuscule."

photo ID Groups mobilize against voter ID proposal

Rep. Harry Warren, R-Rowan, said North Carolina needs more than books of signatures to ensure elections are fair.

"I don't think the signature statute holds muster to what the people out there want," said Warren, who is drafting a voter ID bill for the coming session. "We took an oath to uphold the Constitution, and part of that is protecting the integrity of the vote."

Bob Hall, executive director of Democracy North Carolina, estimated that anywhere from 100,000 to more than 500,000 of the 6 million registered voters in the state don't have a photo ID. Blacks are 40 percent more likely than whites to fall in that group, he said, adding that seniors, women and young voters also would be disproportionately affected by an ID law.

"Why does the state want to spend millions of dollars to put up a stupid barrier for people who are legitimate voters?" Hall said.

Previous voter ID proposals haven't addressed people who cast mail-in absentee ballots, and Hall noted those voters are more likely to be Republican.

"The Republican Party is trying to use the political process – to manipulate the political process – for their own advantage, and that's wrong," he said.

Barber, Hall and others said lawmakers should instead use federal Help America Vote Act funds to help county elections officials beef up training and staffing at the polls. Also, they said, the state should invest in computerizing national voting records and back efforts for national voting standards.

"We want integrity (in elections), and we have supported things that would bring integrity," Barber said. "Let the elections be broad and open, and let the chips fall where they may. Don't stack the deck ... with voter ID and claim we've have a fair and free election."

Warren said he wants a bill that's fair and balanced but understands not everyone will be happy with it.

"In the final analysis, we'll have a good photo ID bill that will protect integrity of the vote and address concerns these groups are expressing," he said.


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  • renaissancemon Jan 25, 2013

    > your suggesting anything dishonest happened isn't true [junkmail5]The Constitution entitles you to vote for anyone the Constitution doesn't disqualify. The legislature swears to uphold the Constitution. But then they refuse to count your vote for anyone THEY feel like calling disqualified. It's not just dishonest, it usurps the People's voice.

    Cooper "won" by a Soviet-style ballot: rigged to guarantee unanimity. The White House denounced Saddam Hussein for pulling that stunt in 2002. But here in 2013 in the world's beacon of democracy you call it honest. Let the incumbents keep picking and choosing which votes to count, is your position.

    > In other words- no fraud at all. They -exactly- followed the law.

    A law that orders them to report a fraudulent tally is a fraudulent law.

    > And in no way does voter ID have anything to do with your "complaint" either.

    How can you care about some people stuffing the ballot box when you don't care about other people throwing ballots away?

  • junkmail5 Jan 25, 2013

    You mean besides that the elections board admits it?? Just ask them, yes or no. They will tell you openly, yes, they discarded all votes in the Attorney General race which were not cast for Roy Cooper-enaissancemon

    Uh.... then later in your post you quote the law that REQUIRES them to do that.

    So your suggesting anything dishonest happened isn't true at all.

    You're instead upset that you weren't allowed to violate the current voting laws.

    Which say this "Write‑in votes for names other than those of qualified write‑in candidates shall not be counted for any purpose and shall not be recorded on the abstract."

    In other words- no fraud at all. They -exactly- followed the law.

    And in no way does voter ID have anything to do with your "complaint" either.

  • renaissancemon Jan 24, 2013

    >> Voters who opposed [Roy Cooper] by writing [in] a different eligible person were censored. The tally was falsified. [renaissancemon]> Evidence?? [junkmail5]You mean besides that the elections board admits it?? Just ask them, yes or no. They will tell you openly, yes, they discarded all votes in the Attorney General race which were not cast for Roy Cooper.

    It shouldn't surprise anyone. It is the only rational explanation for the fact that the official tally says he got 2,828,941 out of 2,828,941 total votes. Because the official tally is LYING. The total number of votes is OFFICIALLY UNDER-REPORTED.

    SO IF YOU CARE ABOUT ELECTION FRAUD, fight this OPEN, CURRENT fraud FIRST. Demand the repeal of NC Statute 163-123. That is the name of the state's general ban on write-in voting.

  • driverkid3 Jan 24, 2013

    charmcclainlovesdogs2::::No one can say they would be thrilled if we had the VOTER ID? Why no response?

    I would be thrilled if this passes. You know why? Because it would frustrate the dems to no end that they couldn't implement THEIR voting strategy on this state at least. This state has been corrupt for far too long and it's time that someone has what it takes to get is straightened out.

  • jcarroll006 Jan 24, 2013

    Crumps, you are confusing voter fraud with election fraud. There is a difference.

  • jcarroll006 Jan 24, 2013

    driverkid3 - 'Everyone's best interest' in terms of my previous statement means the collective will of the people. And that interest is mine & yours in terms of this discussion. The only way to achieve the most accurate measure of the collective will of the people is to enable people to vote and to make sure those votes are counted. There, explained as you asked - you're welcome.

  • junkmail5 Jan 24, 2013

    Vote, and vote often: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/03/roxanne-rubin-nevada-voting-twice_n_2068999.html

    and there again, she FAILED to vote a second time.

    All without a voter ID law.

    Which is why we need to give BOE access to DMV Photo Records- tatts1000

    Which won't help all the folks without licenses

  • beef Jan 24, 2013

    issymayake::::1) Has anyone ever seen an illegal alien at their voting precinct?

    Maybe. What do they look like?

  • junkmail5 Jan 24, 2013

    Every time I vote, I think about how easy it would be to impersonate another voter.

    Apparently not very easy, since there's no evidence of anyone doing it on any significant scale.

    During the 2010 election, a public official in my county tried to vote twice- Danny22

    And failed. All without needing voter ID.

  • Krimson Jan 24, 2013

    Vote, and vote often: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/03/roxanne-rubin-nevada-voting-twice_n_2068999.html