Opinion roundup: July 31, 2016 -- Reacting to ruling finding N.C. voter ID law discriminates

Posted July 31, 2016 10:22 a.m. EDT

With 'surgical precision' (Salisbury Post) -- North Carolina’s new voter restrictions have been called out for what they are — deliberate attempts to curb African-American voting. The more Gov. Pat McCrory and Republican legislative leaders defend this over-reaching law, the further back they set our state.

Voter ID ruling a victory for democracy (Rocky Mount Telegram) -- A federal appeals court decision to block North Carolina’s restrictive voter ID law certainly is a victory for voting rights.

Law to thwart voter fraud was itself fraudulent (New Bern Sun Journal) -- If all it did was require voters to present an ID, North Carolina's Voter ID law would have accomplished its stated purpose of thwarting a statistically non-existent threat of voter fraud. But it didn't stop there.

N.C.’s voting restrictions struck down as racist (New York Times) -- For all the lofty rhetoric the nation heard in the last two weeks about democracy at the Republican and Democratic Party conventions, these recent federal court decisions show the grimier reality of politics and the bitter struggle for basic fairness beyond the national spotlight. The black voters of North Carolina have won a major victory and will now have a better chance of making a difference come November.

N.C. overreached with voting rules (Wilmington Star-News) -- Arguments such as “everyone has an ID” or “everyone can easily get an ID” or “if you can’t be bothered to get an ID, you don’t deserve to be able to vote” are specious. The bottom line is this -- voting is such a sacred and essential right than any impediment put between citizens and the ballot box must be a last resort and equal in its effect on voters. North Carolina’s restrictions did not meet that burden.

Yet another strike against N.C.'s anti-civil rights laws (Elizabeth City Daily Advance) -- North Carolina’s Republican leadership got yet another lesson on justice and the perils of anti-civil rights lawmaking on Friday when a federal appeals court blocked another of their signature rights-restricting pieces of legislation.

4th Circuit ruling exposes the real N.C. voting fraud (Charlotte Observer) -- We knew. Deep down, most of us knew. We knew that North Carolina’s 2013 voter ID law, like similar laws across the country, was not truly about voter fraud, but voter suppression. We knew Republicans were less interested in the integrity of elections than in building obstacles for their opponents’ supporters. We knew. Some Republicans even admitted it. And last week, in North Carolina, they got called on it. … We knew. So did those lawmakers. And now, the 4th Circuit affirmed it: The fraud we needed to be protected from is what happened in the General Assembly.

A jolt for democracy (Greensboro News & Record) -- When the Rev. William Barber spoke to the Democratic National Convention Thursday night about “reviving the heart of our democracy,” he didn’t know that a court ruling Friday would provide the electric shock to do that.

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