Raleigh: Today, Governor Roy Cooper and Attorney General Josh Stein have taken steps to withdraw the state's petition for a Writ of Certiorari to the U.S. Supreme Court of State of North Carolina V. North Carolina State Conference of the NAACP
, the voting restrictions law overturned by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals last year.
Last year, judges on the Fourth Circuit overturned North Carolina's 2013 voting restrictions law after finding that it sought to "target African Americans with almost surgical precision" in order to limit access to the ballot box. The previous administration joined in petitioning the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case on December 27th.
This morning, the Governor's General Counsel and Chief Deputy Attorney General jointly sent a letter discharging outside counsel in the case on behalf of the State. Also today, the Governor's Office and the NC Department of Justice formally withdrew the State and Governor's request for the U.S. Supreme Court to review the Fourth Circuit's decision.
After the Governor's Office and N.C. Department of Justice withdraw, the State Board of Elections, its individual members, and its Executive Director will remain in the case for the time being.
"We need to make it easier for people to exercise their right to vote, not harder, and I will not continue to waste time and money appealing this unconstitutional law,"
Governor Cooper said. "It's time for North Carolina to stop fighting for this unfair, unconstitutional law and work instead to improve equal access for voters."
"The right to vote is our most fundamental right,"
said AG Stein. "Voting is how people hold their government accountable. I support efforts to guarantee fair and honest elections, but those efforts should not be used as an excuse to make it harder for people to vote."
- Contact: Ford Porter