The NC General Assembly Readies to Give Life to the New Photo-Voter ID Amendment | Beaufort County Now | On November 6, an amendment to the North Carolina constitution requiring voters to present a photo identification for voting in person (the "Voter ID" amendment) passed with 55 percent support.

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
    On November 6, an amendment to the North Carolina constitution requiring voters to present a photo identification for voting in person (the "Voter ID" amendment) passed with 55 percent support. In all its prior elections, North Carolina voters were not obligated to show any form of identification at all when they showed up to vote, which seems impossible given the many instances of voter irregularity, the numbers that don't make sense, the highly questionable votes that continue to roll in even after the election, the persistent appearance of impropriety in several of the counties in NC, the many instances of reported voter fraud by poll workers and other eyewitnesses, the instances of actual verified voter fraud uncovered by the NC Voter Integrity Project, the refusal of the state Board of Elections to prosecute the instances of fraud, and the inconsistencies (pointing to a scheme of voter fraud) unearthed by Major Dave Goetze when he analyzed all the numbers of voters versus recorded votes,

    The adoption of a photo ID requirement to vote finally brings North Carolina into alignment with the great majority of other states who have voter identification requirements. Thirty-four states already require some sort of identification for voting in person. Of those, 17 states require a photo ID.

    A voter ID must be viewed as a common sense requirement because many Western democracies, in fact, require voter ID in some form.

    North Carolina recognized the need for a photo ID to vote, to address the claims and the opportunity for voter fraud and to address the general lack of trust and confidence in the integrity of its elections, and had already passed a valid Voter ID law back in 2013 (HB 589, which was the initial bill that originated in the NC House; it was amended in the Senate and then enacted as SL 2013-381).. It was to take effect in 2016, in time for the presidential election. But African-American activist groups, like the NC chapter of the NAACP, protested strongly against it and challenged it in court, alleging the law to be a "blatant attempt to disenfranchise voters of color." The Federal District Court for the Middle District of NC found no discriminatory intent, but on appeal to the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, the 3-judge panel agreed with the petitioners (challengers) and on July 29, 2016, it struct down NC's Voter ID law. [The opinion can be accessed at: http://www.ca4.uscourts.gov/Opinions/Published/161468.P.pdf ] The NC state legislature appealed to the US Supreme Court the following May, but the high court refused to grant review. It denied review, not on the merits, and not on the valid issue at hand, but based on a procedural inconsistency. Pat McCrory filed the petition for review but lost his Governor's seat in 2016 to Roy Cooper, thus making the challenge by the legislature invalid. In the Court's response to the NC legislature, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote: "Given the blizzard of filings over who is and who is not authorized to seek review in this Court under North Carolina law, it is important to recall our frequent admonition that 'the denial of a writ of certiorari imports no expression of opinion upon the merits of the case.'" Again, in denying to hear the case, the Supreme Court was not ruling on whether the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals' three-judge panel was correct or not in its assessment of the North Carolina law.

    After the crushing blow by the activist 4th Circuit, the NC legislature was left to figure out another way to deliver to the NC citizens a Photo ID voter law, a law which was top on their list of demands in sending a Republican majority to Raleigh. A constitutional amendment was the likely solution. It was not a legislature-driven initiative but rather one voted upon by the people themselves. It would be their direct voice.

    And they made it known at the ballot box. Again, 55% of North Carolinians voted in favor of the amendment.

    The language of the Photo ID amendment, per House Bill 1092 (H.B. 1092), states: "Every person offering to vote in person shall present photo identification before voting in the manner prescribed by law."

    And that is where the amendment stands right now - waiting for the statute outlining North Carolina's voting laws to be amended to include new language giving life to the amendment and setting forth the specifics regarding the photo ID requirement to vote. Yesterday, a legislative committee in charge of the draft legislation held an open hearing, to hear from interested persons and parties regarding the strictness of the photo requirement.

    The intent of the amendment would suggest that voters want a strict photo ID voter law. Why do I say this? Considering the intense fight by Democrats and groups representing blacks to oppose and challenge a common-sense Voter ID law (it wasn't even a strict one) and the intense media opposition campaign by the liberal-controlled media and by the Democrats (with George Soros providing much of the funding) to the Voter ID amendment, it seems obvious that the reason they were (and have been) so intently opposed to any type of voter ID is because they don't want honest elections. Only a strict photo ID requirement can effectively thwart any of their plans to engage in voter manipulation or fraud.

HbAD0

    NC Representatives Michele Presnell (R-Yancey) and John Sauls (R-Lee), both primary sponsors of H.B. 1092, believe the amendment is vital to block election fraud. As Rep. Presnell explained: "Citizens are increasingly concerned about attempts to subvert our elections process and it is incumbent upon government officials to safeguard public perception of our democracy as well as the actual ballots cast." And Rep. Sauls added: "Confidence in the American democracy is essential to its longevity. Our state must not tolerate anyone's vote being threatened because lawmakers failed to prevent fraud."

    Republicans have a narrow window between now and January to pass legislation under their veto-proof majority. Although Republicans were able to maintain control of both chambers of the state legislature, they failed to preserve the three-fifths supermajority requirement in the North Carolina House and Senate. This is especially critical since the sitting governor, Roy Cooper, is a Democrat.

    Last week, Republican leaders in the NC General Assembly drafted a strict Voter ID bill that describes what forms of photo ID would be allowed. That bill would require persons to show one of the following forms of photo identification when they show up to vote: A North Carolina driver's license; a U.S. passport; a military ID and veteran ID; tribal IDs; other forms of photo ID issued by the North Carolina Department of Transportation; and a voter ID card issued by each county's board of elections office. But an issue came up as to whether student ID cards should be included as an acceptable form of identification. Legislators were inclined to include student identification cards issued by the public university system, but not by private colleges and universities. And so a revised bill was submitted, by Rep. David Lewis (R-Harnett), which included two additional forms of acceptable identification - new voter photo ID cards issued for free by county boards and student IDs issued by the University of North Carolina system's 17 schools. It is this latest draft bill (v. 09) that was the focus of attention at yesterday's public hearing.

HbAD1

    That draft bill is a strict Photo ID type of Voter ID bill. That is, it is restrictive in terms of what forms of ID would be allowed.

    Specifically, the draft bill (v. 09) provides:

    PART I: IMPLEMENTATION OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL REQUIREMENT REQUIRING PHOTOGRAPHIC IDENTIFICATION TO VOTE

    SECTION 1.1(a) Article 17 of Chapter 163A of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new section to read:

    "§ 163A-869.1. Voter photo identification cards.

    (a) The county board of elections shall, in accordance with this section, issue without charge voter photo identification cards upon request to registered voters. The voter photo identification cards shall contain a photograph of the voter and the registration number for that voter. The voter photo identification card shall be used for voting purposes only, and shall expire eight years from the date of issuance.

    (b) The State Board shall make available to county board of elections the equipment necessary to print voter photo identification cards. The county board of elections shall operate and maintain the equipment necessary to print voter photo identification cards.

    (c) The State Board shall adopt rules to ensure at a minimum, but not limited to, the following:

    (1) A registered voter seeking to obtain a voter photo identification card shall provide the voter's date of birth and the last four digits of the voter's social security number.

    (2) Voter photo identification cards shall be issued at any time, except during the time period between the end of the voter registration deadline for a primary or election as provided in G.S. 163A-865 and election day for each primary and election.

    (3) If the registered voter loses or defaces the voter's photo identification card, the voter may obtain a duplicate card without charge from his or her county board of registration upon request in person, or by telephone, or mail."

    "§ 163A-1145.1. Requirement for photo identification to vote in person.

    (a). Photo Identification Required to Vote. - When a voter presents to vote in person, the voter shall produce any of the following forms of identification that contain a photograph of the voter:

    (1) Any of the following that is valid and unexpired:

    a. A North Carolina drivers license.

    b. A special identification card for nonoperators issued under G.S. 20-37.7 or other form of non-temporary identification issued by the Division of Motor Vehicles of the Department of Transportation.

    c. A United States passport.

    d. A North Carolina voter photo identification card of the voter issued pursuant to G.S. 163A-869.1.

    e. A valid and current tribal enrollment card issued by a federally recognized tribe.

    f. A valid and current tribal enrollment card issued by a tribe recognized by this State under Chapter 71A of the General Statutes, provided that card meets all of the following criteria:

    (i). Is issued in accordance with a process approved by the State Board that requires an application and proof of identity equivalent to the requirements for issuance of a special identification card by the Division of Motor Vehicles of the Department of Transportation.

    (ii). Is signed by an elected official of the tribe.

    g. A student identification card issued by a constituent institution of the University of North Carolina in accordance with a process approved by the State Board that requires an application and proof of identity equivalent to the requirements for issuance of a special identification card by the Division of Motor Vehicles of the Department of Transportation.

    h. A drivers license or special identification card for nonoperators issued by another state, the District of Columbia, or a territory or commonwealth of the United States, but only if the voter's voter registration was within 90 days of the election.

    (2) Any of the following, regardless of whether the identification contains a printed expiration or issuance date:

HbAD2

    a. A military identification card issued by the United States government.

    b. A Veterans Identification Card issued by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs for use at Veterans Administration medical facilities.

    (3) Any expired form of identification allowed in this subsection presented by a voter having attained the age of 70 years at the time of presentation at the voting place, provided that the identification was unexpired on the voter's 70th birthday.

    (b). Verification of Photo Identification. - After presentation of the required identification described in subsection (a) of this section, the precinct officials assigned to check registration shall compare the photograph contained on the required identification with the person presenting to vote. The precinct official shall verify that the photograph is that of the person seeking to vote. If the precinct official disputes that the photograph contained on the required identification is the person presenting to vote, a challenge shall be conducted in accordance with the procedures of G.S. 163A-914.

Go Back
HbAD3

 
Back to Top