Local Politics

1M registered NC voters don't have photo ID

Posted February 4, 2011

— A Republican-led effort to require North Carolina voters to present identification at the polls could hit a snag if lawmakers insist on a photo ID.

An analysis by the State Board of Elections obtained Friday by WRAL News shows that at least 700,000 registered voters in the state don't have a driver's license or photo ID issued by the Division of Motor Vehicles. Records for another 300,000 people need further checking to determine if they have a license, elections officials said.

That would mean the state would need to furnish photo IDs to about 1 million people so they could vote if the General Assembly approves voter identification legislation.

Legislation introduced last year would allow various forms of identification, including utility bills or bank statements, but lawmakers said they eventually hope to require a photo ID. A new bill on the issues hasn't yet been filed this session.

North Carolina has about 6.4 million registered voters.

Some argue that requiring identification might discriminate against the poor, the elderly and racial minorities, but GOP lawmakers said the move is meant only to eliminate any fraud at the polls.

The analysis shows that 508,000 registered Democrats, 277,000 Republicans and 219,000 unaffiliated voters lack a driver's license. About two-thirds of those without a license are women, and about two-thirds are white, the analysis shows. The breakdown is fairly even across age groups.

Elections officials say they don't plan to oppose a new bill like House Bill 430, as long as it mirrors the current law that calls for some form of identification to register to vote.

Requiring a photo ID would create more complications, officials said, noting that court rulings dictate IDs must be provided free to voters, which would require extra money and staff.

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  • borg1005 Feb 8, 10:30 a.m.

    "Photo ID stands to put up a barrier to over 700,000 non-Republicans."

    Don't you think it would also be a "barrier" to other than Democrats? This so-called barrier is only in the minds of those who believe that anyone from anywhere who shows up at the polls deserves to vote. I play by the rules, why can't they?

    For the life of me, I cannot understand the angst of those against photo ID. It is a one time shot that ensures the integrity of the voting process. Without that integrity, we are a Banana Republic.

  • ProCon Feb 7, 6:11 p.m.

    "The analysis shows that 508,000 registered Democrats, 277,000 Republicans and 219,000 unaffiliated voters lack a driver's license". This legislation is just a numbers games. Photo ID stands to put up a barrier to over 700,000 non-Republicans. The other number for CITIZENS is the $20 million that the legislature has to find to pay for this... Thats you and me folks, it either comes in higher taxes, or more likely even deeper cuts in Education. In the face of the budget challenges we already have in NC, I'd prefer that we keep more teachers on on the payroll. Voter fraud is a FELONY in NC, no one in their right mind is going out and casting ONE VOTE to risk a felony charge.

  • borg1005 Feb 7, 4:21 p.m.

    Bendal1 - "If you can't show me where there's even a small amount of voter fraud going on, (not honest mistakes in voting location, etc),"
    Put "Minnesota voting fraud" into your search engines and see what comes up. Probably even just "voter fraud" would give you plenty of articles.

    "Why go through all this effort to set up yet more hoops for (Democratic) voters to jump through?"
    I find that amusing - why wouldn't Republican voters have to jump through those same hoops? Freudian slip? :-)

  • mdanielson3 Feb 7, 11:46 a.m.

    For those that say: " You need to have an ID card" Please show me what state/federal law mandates you need to carry a form of ID.

    In fact, the only time you are required to show ID to police is if there is reasonable suspicion to detain you.

  • Bendal1 Feb 7, 11:28 a.m.

    Just because some elections had narrow victory margins doesn't mean there was any significant amount of voter fraud; it sounds like some people are worrying over a nonexistent problem. If you can't show me where there's even a small amount of voter fraud going on, (not honest mistakes in voting location, etc), why go through all this effort to set up yet more hoops for (Democratic) voters to jump through?

  • borg1005 Feb 7, 11:01 a.m.

    We’ve had many recent elections being decided by the smallest of margins, so that even a tiny amount of election fraud can tilt an election. The 2008 U.S. Senate race in Minnesota was decided by 312 votes out of 2.9 million. That minuscule edge gave the Democrats their filibuster-proof majority in the Senate – and we ended up with ObamaCare and a ton of other Socialistic legislation. For those who argue that voter fraud isn’t that great, at what point would you say it is? I guess they wouldn't be upset if their unmarried daughter told them she was "a little bit pregnant".

  • North Carolina Home Feb 4, 7:56 p.m.

    All of you former Acorn employees need to look for alternative employment opportunites for 2012

  • North Carolina Home Feb 4, 7:54 p.m.

    Fortunately the new Republican majority in the Legislature will respond to the base of voters across all of NC and not just the hotbeds of the fast failing "Blue Social Model" embraced by the Democrats of Wake and Orange County.

  • LovemyPirates Feb 4, 7:54 p.m.

    It's an issue because "at least 700,000 registered voters in the state don't have a driver's license or photo ID issued by the Division of Motor Vehicles." Most of these are probably older people who no longer drive so how would they get a photo id?

  • MizzZeta Feb 4, 7:53 p.m.

    It doesn't matter who doesn't have a valid NCID. I think resources are in place to make sure everyone eligible to vote will have an NCID in time for any election. Even if this is a ploy to suppress voting among a particular party, it won't be very successful.

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