NAACP says voting reform law is about more than voter ID - WNCN: News, Weather

NAACP says voting reform law is about more than voter ID

Posted: Updated:
N.C. NAACP president Rev. William Barber said the election reform law is about more than just voter ID. N.C. NAACP president Rev. William Barber said the election reform law is about more than just voter ID.
DURHAM, N.C. -

The president of the North Carolina NAACP says the election reform law signed by Gov. Pat McCrory in July is about more than just the law's voter ID provision.

On Monday, United States Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the Justice Department will sue the state for alleged racial discrimination over its election reform law, also known as the Voter Information Verification Act.

Holder said the lawsuit will be filed in the middle district of North Carolina.

But McCrory was quick to rebut the challenge, saying the state will stand its ground and fight the lawsuit. He argued that he saw a video of President Barack Obama voting in Chicago and presenting an ID.

"I believe if showing a voter ID is good enough for our own president in Illinois, it's good enough for North Carolina," McCrory said.

N.C. NAACP president Rev. William Barber, however, said the law is about more than just voter ID.

"This is about voter suppression," Barber said Monday. "This is about fundamentally rewriting and restructuring voting rights and access to voting for citizens across this state."

During a noon press conference Monday, Holder said that according to North Carolina's own statistics, about 70 percent of blacks voted early in the 2008 and 2012 general elections.

"We will show they were discriminatory both in intent and in impact," Holder said.

Barber echoed Holder's statistics, explaining, "When you look at the fact that 40 to 45 percent of African Americans use same-day registration, then what happens is you see a disproportion.

"While it has this disparaged, discriminatory and intentional impact among African Americans, all North Carolinians should be concerned about it."

Still, Sen. Rick Gunn (R-District 24) explained that the law will not affect any North Carolina citizen's right to vote, saying that the law is "fair and it is consistent with other areas of our country."

"If anything, by extending the voter time on off hours, it should give other people the chance to actually get out to vote," Gunn said.

State Republican leaders have argued the need for voter ID to curb voter fraud, but Holder said there was little evidence of voter fraud in the state. WNCN reported in July that of the nearly 7 million ballots cast in the general and two primary elections in 2012, the state Board of Elections said 121 alleged cases of voter fraud were referred to the appropriate district attorney's office.

"It's not about voter fraud. Never has been any evidence of that," Barber said. "That was the distortion, the fraud, that set up passing this manipulative bill."

In addition to the voter ID requirement, election reform law cuts early voting by a week, ends same-day voter registration and eliminates a popular high school civics program that encouraged students to register to vote in advance of their 18th birthdays.

North Carolina Central University freshman Heather Bumpus said the early voting and same-day registration provisions will have the greatest implication on college-aged voters.

"I don't agree with it because a lot of people are too busy to pre-register, so it will hinder them in putting their voice out there," Bumpus said.

Junior Crystal Hart agreed, saying, "I believe if you don't have knowledge of that, it will affect you because you'll go and vote and won't be able to."

The NAACP filed a lawsuit last month similar to the one the federal government announced Monday.

RELATED STORIES

RELATED LINKS

Justin Quesinberry

Justin is a reporter for WNCN and a North Carolina native. He has spent the better part of the last decade covering the news in central North Carolina.  More>>

  • NAACP says voting reform law is about more than voter IDMore>>

  • NC's checkered voting rights past

    NC's checkered voting rights past

    North Carolina has a checkered past when it comes to voting rights. In 1900, the state used literacy tests, grandfather clauses and poll taxes to limit the number of black votes. Grandfather clauses were eliminated in 1915 and poll taxes were dropped in 1920. Literacy tests are still in the state constitution.
  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • 77-year-old questioned, defended as true Marine after NFL player takes his photo

    77-year-old questioned, defended as true Marine after NFL player takes his photo

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 1:58 PM EDT2014-07-22 17:58:35 GMT
    (WMC) - It was a story that made its rounds on social media. On a recent flight DeAngelo Williams, Mid-Southerner and running back for the Carolina Panthers, gave his first-class plane seat to a 77-year-old
    Family members are upset and hurt that their relative, James Wesley Bolden, is being called a liar and "a fake."
  • Largest companies by revenue in each state

    Largest companies by revenue in each state

    Thursday, July 10 2014 8:01 PM EDT2014-07-11 00:01:10 GMT
    Broadview Networks recently decided to find out the biggest -- by revenue -- company in each state in the US.The company used the Fortune 500 list to start with, but needed data by state, so it turned to Hoover's.With data from that company, they were able to search through each state's list of companies and then find the largest -- by revenue.Just flip through the list above and see who is the biggest in each state, what town they are based and their revenue.
    Broadview Networks recently decided to find out the biggest -- by revenue -- company in each state in the US.The company used the Fortune 500 list to start with, but needed data by state, so it turned to Hoover's.With data from that company, they were able to search through each state's list of companies and then find the largest -- by revenue.Just flip through the list above and see who is the biggest in each state, what town they are based and their revenue.
  • Air Algerie jet with 116 on board crashes in Mali

    Air Algerie jet with 116 on board crashes in Mali

    Friday, July 25 2014 2:56 AM EDT2014-07-25 06:56:56 GMT
    The official Algerian news agency says an Air Algerie flight from Burkina Faso to Algiers has disappeared from the radar.
    An Air Algerie jetliner carrying 116 people crashed Thursday in a rainstorm over restive Mali, the third major international aviation disaster in a week.
Powered by WorldNow

1205 Front St., Raleigh
N.C., 27609

Telephone: 919.836.1717
Fax: 919.836.1687
Email: newstips@wncn.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.