Supreme Court Steps Back from NC Voting Law

Disapproving voters called it the most restrictive voter law in the country

CHARLOTTE, NC — North Carolina Republicans vow to keep fighting for stricter voting laws.

Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal to a lower court ruling that threw out the state’s controversial voter ID law.

Disapproving voters called it the most restrictive voter law in the country.

“It should be the easiest thing we do!” said Ray McKinnon with New South Progressives.

A district court ruled that it intentionally discriminated against African Americans.

“I think their effect was to limit power limit the black and brown voting block,” said McKinnon.

Now, the state’s law that required voter IDs, shortened early voting and registration windows and required you to vote in your precinct, is done.

When the Supreme Court decided to stay out of it, the district court ruling that it was unconstitutional stands.

“You can’t pass racially discriminatory voting laws,” said American Civil Liberties Union’s Mike Meno.

The district court ruled in favor of the ACLU, saying the voter ID law specifically targeted African Americans by requiring a photo ID that mostly whites have.

“Free and fair elections are the bedrock of a Democracy, and no person should have to jump hurdles,” said McKinnon.

NC GOP Chair Robin Hayes calls the decision frustrating.

“No way does anyone want to suppress the vote,” said Hayes. “People deserve the right to cast a legal ballot and have it counted, not canceled, by someone who has voted improperly. That’s my frustration.”

The legislature passed the law in 2013, pointing to voter fraud.

“There’s not evidence of that whatsoever,” said Meno. “The latest report from state officials, I think, found one potential instance.”

Since the law passed, the Mecklenburg County Democratic Party Chair Jane Whitley says the calls come in.

“Our older voters were very confused,” said Whitley.”They don’t have a drivers license currently. It’s difficult for them to get out of the house to get that information.”

Republicans say they plan to keep fighting for voter ID measures.