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USA Today, McCrory spar over NC voting law

Posted August 29, 2013

Gov. Pat McCrory

— Gov. Pat McCrory has taken to the pages of national newspaper USA Today to defend himself against a critical editorial by the paper. 

"As part of a package of plainly discriminatory voting restrictions, North Carolina cut its early voting from 17 days to 10, ostensibly to save money. Considering that 70 percent of blacks in the state voted early last year, according to the ACLU, the real motive isn't hard to deduce," the paper's editorial board wrote in a column criticizing voting rights restrictions in several states.

"Advocates of voter restrictions often justify them by saying it's an outrage when even one ineligible voter casts a vote. But it's even more outrageous when eligible voters are denied their most fundamental right. There's a reasonable middle ground, but it won't be found by mimicking tactics of the segregated '60s," the editorial concluded. 

The changes in North Carolina law aren't limited to the requirement that voters show a current, valid, government-issued photo ID, beginning in 2016. The bill McCrory signed into law also cuts the early voting period from 17 days to 10, taking one of two weekends away and leaving only a single Sunday for "Souls to the Polls" drives popular with black churches.

The new law also bans same-day registration, pre-registration for 16- and 17-year-olds and partial ballot voting for voters who show up at the wrong precinct on Election Day. It also requires counties using electronic voting systems to purchase new or add-on technology to produce a paper ballot. That could mean fewer machines on Election Day in many North Carolina counties.

McCrory didn't address the additional restrictions in his responding op-ed, sticking to voter ID with the same comparisons he's been using since his last campaign.

"In 2016, photo ID will be required to vote in North Carolina, just as it is today when citizens cash a check, apply for government benefits or even when buying cold remedies such as Sudafed," McCrory wrote. 

He also used the opportunity to respond to critics like former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, who openly criticized McCrory and ridiculed claims of widespread voter fraud in a Raleigh speech last week

"The need for photo ID has been questioned by those who say voter fraud isn't a problem in North Carolina. However, assuming fraud isn't a threat when multimillion-dollar campaigns are trying to win in a state where millions of votes are cast is like believing oversight isn't needed against Wall Street insider trading," McCrory wrote in his op-ed.

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  • Krimson Sep 3, 2013

    Looks like Pete Gilbert's "Tour of NC Universities and Colleges" has been cancelled...

  • Krimson Sep 3, 2013

    "Anyone who is interested in the political process can go to the Board of Elections when they are 18 and register to vote." --foolmeonce

    Unless that person happen to turn 18 in the 25 day period b/w when Registrations close and Election Day. In that case, that person's ability to pre-register, so that they could vote (as per your right) on Election Day has been removed by the NCGOP.

    Good job FMO. You support a Party that took the Right to Vote away from a certain segment of the population, based entirely on Age. "Dis-enfranchisement" and "Age discrimination". Wanna try for a third???

  • AliceBToklas Sep 3, 2013

    Not one single eligible voter will be denied the right to vote because we are requiring a photo id. Go get your ID's if you don't have them. There is plenty of time. 38 states already require ID, and it should be a national requirement. Anyone who is interested in the political process can go to the Board of Elections when they are 18 and register to vote.
    --foolmeonce

    I want to hear how you feel when you get to the polls only to realize you've lost your ID. It happens.

  • AliceBToklas Sep 3, 2013

    If I could have my way all the right wingers would manage to lose their driver's license (since they all appear to have one) the day before the election. Problem solved.

  • Krimson Sep 3, 2013

    TWIS: "I don't think any voting should be allowed on Sunday."

    That's fine and dandy. You go ahead and throw away your rights, that's your prerogative. Don't volunteer ours...

    BTW, ABC Stores are open on Sunday...

  • junkmail5 Sep 3, 2013

    I don't think any voting should be allowed on Sunday. I mean, seriously, what other government function is open to the citizenry on Sunday? Why voting?

    Voting should take place Monday-Friday, maybe Saturday, just like everything else having to do with the government.
    thewayitis

    Why?

    Given saturday and sunday are when the MOST people have the MOST free time those seem the most obvious days to ALLOW additional voting time.

  • thewayitis Sep 3, 2013

    I don't think any voting should be allowed on Sunday. I mean, seriously, what other government function is open to the citizenry on Sunday? Why voting?

    Voting should take place Monday-Friday, maybe Saturday, just like everything else having to do with the government.

  • jackjones2nc Aug 31, 2013

    Republicans' so-called "Voter ID" law includes 9 tactics to suppress voter participation. This ugly legislation doesn't pass the smell test, and everyday citizens know it.

  • junkmail5 Aug 30, 2013

    i have no problem at all with voter id.. great job gov .. we need drug test for all welfare recipents also..
    gibbman67

    why do you support wasting money on ideas that are either huge wastes of money to solve imaginary problems or ILLEGAL huge wastes of money to solve imaginary problems?

  • miseem Aug 30, 2013

    Mr Watts-those college students can get an absentee ballot and vote in their home precinct, or they can go to the local board of elections, get a local address, and go to their local precinct. Simple solution, no chance of fraud.
    foolmeonce.

    Most documented cases of voter fraud have been from absentee voting. Not in person voting. So you are suggesting that we make a big switch to a less secure method? The GA legislation does not require their approved in person photo ID for absentee voting.

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