Republican leaders were quick to condemn Gov. Perdue's veto today of House Bill 351, a measure that would have required voters to show state-issued photo ID at the polls.
From Senate Leader Phil Berger:
“We shouldn’t be surprised by how far the governor will go to score political points with the liberal wing of her party. A measure that ensures voters are who they say they are is a no-brainer, and most North Carolinians agree. It’s a shame Gov. Perdue is playing politics with the integrity of elections.”
From House Speaker Thom Tillis:
“Governor Perdue’s latest veto is the clearest example yet that she is out of touch with North Carolinians. An overwhelming majority of our citizens have continued to support this bill, knowing that it would provide confidence in voting and protect against potential voter fraud. It would have done nothing to discourage or prevent voting by those who have a right to do so. Governor Perdue has put the interests of fringe elements of her political party above the wishes of the majority of North Carolinians.”
And from state GOP chairman Robin Hayes:
“When given a chance to boost voter confidence, Governor Perdue again chose to appease her liberal base to boost her floundering re-election campaign while ignoring an overwhelming majority of North Carolinians who supported this common-sense bill. Governor Perdue’s veto is not surprising and as unemployment in North Carolina remains at 9.7% for the third straight month, it is clear ‘The Jobs Governor’ is only concerned with one job, her own.”
But Perdue's veto won the applause of Senate Democratic leader Martin Nesbitt:
“Voter ID is nothing more than a costly solution in search of a problem that forces thousands of seniors, minorities, and students to navigate an obstacle course of bureaucracy before being allowed to vote. We can’t afford to spend money we don’t have to solve a problem that doesn’t exist, especially when it makes it harder for nearly 1 million North Carolinians to vote. I applaud Governor Perdue’s veto of this bad bill.”
State Democratic Party chairman David Parker also praised the decision:
“The only thing stopping the Republican legislature from fully repealing the 20th century is Governor Perdue.
“If the voter ID bill became law, thousands of our fellow North Carolinians would be turned away from the polls. This Republican General Assembly, which apparently realizes that it will be turned out of office in a fair fight, is trying to change the rules to keep the people from being heard. Their rigging of the elections, even before the voting starts, makes it more difficult for seniors, college students, newly married/divorced women, and African Americans to vote. The GOP silences those voices so they can manufacture a majority.
“Our North Carolina is better than that. Generations of us have worked and fought together for a hundred years to ensure that all people who are eligible to vote can do so without arbitrary hurdles. It’s not just me who stands with the Governor. Nearly 4,000 people signed our petition against the Voter ID bill. They signed our petition because they know the difference between right-sizing government and doing what’s right by our people.”