It’s been a long time coming but it’s finally here.
Republicans in North Carolina just overrode a veto by the Democratic governor and now Voter ID is the law of the land!
NEWS AND OBSERVER – North Carolina voters will be asked to show photo identification when they go to the polls next year, barring intervention by a court.
The Republican-led legislature took the final step to shrug off Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of its photo ID bill, with the House voting 72-40 Wednesday to override after a long debate that touched on the state’s history of voter suppression.
The Senate took its override vote Tuesday.
Voter ID has been a long-time goal for Republicans. A voter ID requirement that passed as part of a 2013 bill was thrown out by federal courts in 2016. Republicans steered a photo voter ID question onto the November ballot as a constitutional amendment, and 55 percent of voters approved it.
The law counts as acceptable IDs driver licenses, passports, military and veteran IDs, tribal enrollment cards, college IDs, state ID cards issued to non-drivers, state and municipal employee IDs, and a new type of ID issued by local boards of election.
People who don’t have the required ID would be able to cast provisional ballots after signing an affidavit at the the polls saying why they do not have one.
Lawsuits, of course…
The Southern Environmental Law Center, the NC NAACP and other groups have a pending legal challenge to the constitutional amendments, including the voter ID amendment.
The NAACP said it would announce a new lawsuit Thursday.
It was important that Republicans override the veto before the end of the year because their majorities slimmed enough in this last election so that they wouldn’t have been able to override the veto next year. And as you would expect, Governor Cooper is now criticizing Republicans for not waiting until next year. Idiot.
In any event, I don’t expect the courts will be able to keep this law at bay for very long, if at all. The Supreme Court has already upheld voter id laws in other states and NC now has the force of a referendum behind the new one. Also, the next big election isn’t until November, 2020 and I think that’s probably enough time for any challenges to resolve by then.