North Carolina Gov. McCrory signs voter ID law
August 12th, 2013
05:59 PM ET
10 years ago

North Carolina Gov. McCrory signs voter ID law

(CNN) – North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory signed a controversial voter ID bill into law Monday, citing the "common sense" need to protect the right to vote.

The law will go into effect for the 2016 elections and will, among other things, require all voters to present a valid government-issued photo ID at the polls. Opponents contend such laws unfairly discriminate against minority voters.

"Common practices like boarding an airplane and purchasing Sudafed require photo ID and we should expect nothing less for the protection of our right to vote," McCrory said in a statement.

The law passed the Republican-controlled state legislature at the end of July.

North Carolina lawmakers approve controversial election changes

North Carolina is now able to pass voting laws without federal pre-approval after the Supreme Court's ruling on the Voting Rights Act in June. The act had given federal control over voting laws in several southern states, including North Carolina.

Supreme Court limits federal oversight of Voting Rights Act

A Republican, McCrory argued that most states already have voter ID laws and admonished elements on the "extreme left" for using "scare tactics."

"They're more interested in divisive politics than ensuring that no one's vote is disenfranchised by a fraudulent ballot," McCrory said.

The American Civil Liberties Union and the Southern Coalition for Social Justice have already filed a lawsuit challenging the law, according to a statement the ACLU released Monday. The lawsuit criticizes the law for "voter suppression," specifically targeting provisions that limit early voting, end registration on the same day as the vote and prevent voting "out-of-precinct."

These provisions "would unduly burden the right to vote and discriminate against African-American voters, in violation of the U.S. Constitution's equal protection clause and the Voting Rights Act of 1965," the statement says.

"Eliminating a huge part of early voting will cut off voting opportunities for hundreds of thousands of citizens," Dale Ho, director of the ACLU's Voting Rights Project, said in the statement.

"It will turn Election Day into a mess, shoving more voters into even longer lines."

Allison Riggs, staff attorney for the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, said the law would make it more difficult for African-Americans to cast their vote.

"Taken together, the new restrictions in this law will disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of eligible voters, depriving many of our most vulnerable citizens from being able to easily exercise a constitutional right," Riggs said in the statement.

Filed under: North Carolina
soundoff (165 Responses)
  1. trey

    So it is 'common sense' to protect the vote but it is not common sense to protect American jobs from illegal workers, interesting.

    August 13, 2013 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  2. Mike Wallace

    NC_Writer, you are full of hypocrisies and logical fallacies. First you claim that you could be disenfranchised by the mere thought of voter fraud being a possibility. You poor victim, you. I know Socialists like yourself hate the idea of personal responsibility, but you really need to get over that. Then two posts down you claim that essentially "if people really wanted to vote, they would." So people not being able to take off for voting on a specific day or being denied a vote because of long lines is not being disenfranchised, but your victim mentality is. Got it. Run along you little socialist scamp.

    August 13, 2013 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  3. Lynda/Minnesota

    "No early voting, no same day registration......Those limit the voting availability of all people. And for once, the opponents have the right argument."

    Ah, but there is NO POLL TAX ... the "voter" I.Ds will be free. Just make sure you have a video proving your live birth ... preferably showing the doctor signing your birth certificate. Best we start the infant branding at birth to guarantee we are who our doctor says we are. And really, who cares how long it takes the other side to vote anyway?

    It is a dangerous road this new GOP is taking ... requiring American voters jump around GOP mandated stumbling blocks.

    August 13, 2013 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  4. Betty Storey

    That's what happens when you vote for a republicans. What part of them only caring for the rich and not caring about us AT ALL did you not get? Here's your sign!

    August 13, 2013 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  5. Mike Wallace


    Probably because the more densely populated regions of the state do not historically vote the same way as NC_Writer. The idea that voting should be made harder is the antithesis of democracy and the laws issued by the Republicans of this state are the antithesis of smaller government.

    August 13, 2013 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  6. Michael

    So, Mike Wallace, I guess you believe that voting is a test of personal responsibility and that is more than reasonable to expect people to stand in line to vote for hours upon hours is the ultimate test to determine who is responsible enough to cast a ballot.

    August 13, 2013 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  7. Lenny Pincus

    The Gov won't talk about the other 80% of the vote suppression tactics in his bill, because he knows he is on shaky ground with it.

    btw, for all you patriots throwing around "socialist" because someone wants voting to be easier and not harder, you show a complete and total ignorance of history. A huge thread of our country's story is the suppressed elements of American society fighting for the right to vote. That fight continues. It is a fight to expand democracy. Siding with guys like McCrory puts you on the side of royalists and elitists.

    August 13, 2013 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  8. Wake up People!

    I truly don't see how anyone with even half a brain could support the GOP if they're not wealthy. They have done absolutely nothing in 5 years to help us get out of this hole that they put us in the first place. Fox News spews 24/7 that Obama, the Muslim, Kenyan, Marxist, Socialist is destroying their country. The only things they have focused on in 5 years is repealing Roe vs Wade, repealing the ACA, obstructing and doing everything in their power to wreck this economy.

    What is wrong with you people? You repeat Rush, Beck and Hannity word for word, yet you call dems sheeple and kool-aid drinkers. Pathetic.

    August 13, 2013 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  9. Pander Bear

    Today's GOP – protecting us from fraud that doesn't exist. This will get struck down in the courts but seems McGrory is trying to up his national profile. Watch for him to start flirting with a VP slot in 2016.

    August 13, 2013 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  10. Abbey

    When you clearly have one group of politicians who are against accountability, you know they stand to lose big time with all the cheating it's been getting away for all these years. I applaud any politician who goes after these cheats.

    August 13, 2013 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  11. nc_writer

    The answer is that it will make voting more secure. If you're from NC as you claim, then you know how simple it would be to commit fraud. Show up with a Duke Energy bill with someone's name on it and you can vote.

    If you're suggesting that our polls are over crowded because not enough space is made available, then I agree. But I don't agree that the solution to that is to lessen the integrity of the voting system to make it easier to cheat. Yes, tightening up on the ability to cheat makes it more difficult to vote, but doesnt' that also mean that more voters will feel that their vote actually matters?

    If a group was operating in North Carolina and rigging elections...let's say 1000 people, each casting 750 votes over the course of the election. Would you know? It's only 750,000 votes, about 7500 per county. That's hardly anything. Maybe that's how McCrory got elected in the first place, he only won by 511,000 votes.

    August 13, 2013 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  12. SGTRena

    Just found out I have to show state ID to purchase nail polish remover because apparently acetone is used to manufacture meth. Whatever will the minorities do? Talk about a disparate impact–to the consumer. First it was Sudafed, then compressed air, now nail polish remover. My god, the shame of it all.


    August 13, 2013 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  13. nc_writer

    Mike Wallace – reread all my posts with an eye toward the idea that I'm a sarcastic libertarian. But also that I believe that someone could easily cheat in North Carolina voting and there is practically a zero percent chance of getting caught.

    August 13, 2013 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  14. nc_writer

    Pander Bear – what exists is the knowledge that it could happen in NC and it HAS happened in other states. We know that there are people who are willing to cheat to win elections (Acorn, et al.) and I know that cheating in North Carolina is a matter of printing a fake power bill. Or pulling a real one out of the trash.

    So – you've made the positive statement that it doesnt' exist. Care to prove yourself? How do you know? We've got motive, opportunity and no monitoring as to whether or not it happens.

    August 13, 2013 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  15. nc_writer

    Remember that the NC bill is about confidence....not elections Read the first phrase of the first sentence of it, .

    August 13, 2013 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  16. Anonymous

    Unless you live in the state of North Carolina, you should not be opining here ... Voting and Elections are administered by the states and their laws ... If you live somewhere else, you have no dog in this hunt.

    August 13, 2013 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  17. Michael

    nc_writer. Nice try but there is no voting fraud in NC of any significance. You know the real purpose of this legislation just as the Republican legislature and Governor. It's to give the Republicans an edge in elections. Plain and simple. But for obvious reasons, we don't expect you or the Republicans in North Carolina to admit it.

    August 13, 2013 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  18. CA Independent

    So if the requirement of ID causes a burden and racial discrimination, does the same hold true for every other action that requires you to show your ID? We already know that fraud exists in every part of our lives where an advantage can be gained, either monetarily or for power. Yet liberals want us to believe that voting is not one of those areas? Most likely the most unprotected right in our society? To think that fraud does not exist, when the laws are so weak such that it invites fraud, is an incredibly foolish notion. Unless of course, your motive is to commit fraud.

    August 13, 2013 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  19. Gone from Ga

    Pat you will be a one term Gov, in Charlotte we won't forget, its never been about the id its about suppressing the vote for the minorities and the college kids. The only voter fraud going on in NC was the GOP throwing registration forms in the trash.

    August 13, 2013 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  20. Bruce

    Has anyone read the law. I'm netrual on this one...haven't read the law. What are the requirements to obtain the ID?

    August 13, 2013 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  21. Malory Archer


    Unless you live in the state of North Carolina, you should not be opining here ... Voting and Elections are administered by the states and their laws ... If you live somewhere else, you have no dog in this hunt.


    It's happening in most red states, so contrary to your assertions, anyone who lives in a red state has "a dog in this hunt".

    August 13, 2013 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  22. Wake up People!

    It's not just about ID!!!
    They're changing the rules of voting. The people that don't see what this is really about don't want to. End of story.

    August 13, 2013 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  23. Mike Wallace

    Michael, you may want to try actually reading my posts.

    NC_Writer, you are such a libertarian that you promote a larger and more intrusive government through laws like those passed by my state. Yeah. Okay. You are a faux Libertarian. You match up better with the Tea Party types who put these yahoos ni charge under the false guise of smaller government.

    August 13, 2013 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  24. sonnie3

    To have an ID to vote in America is a no brainer
    You need one for every thing else from a drivers lisc to Medicare card

    August 13, 2013 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  25. The Real Tom Paine

    Tom, I saw your diatribe yesterday.The problem that I have is this: no one can deny a huge increase in racist activity int his country since the President was first elected. There have been too many cases of people who ought to know better letting things slip that should have best been left unsaid. Personally, I'm sick of race being brought up in discussions where it was at best a peripheral concern, but its because it was brought into the discussion by conservatives to give themselves a victim status ( yet again) that has made me sick. They claim they cannot criticize the president without being called a racist, yet they are the first ones to claim that racism is being injected into the conversation because they feel they have to strike first. Its a wierd preemptive mentality that permeates the Right on the subject of race because they really feel they have no business discussing it. Its encouraged the more unpleasant enlements on teh Right to be more blatant about their race-based beliefs. I think you are off base with Sniffit, but look at it from our perspective: " I'm not racist, but you are for thinking that I am".

    August 13, 2013 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
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