Last Updated:October 31 @ 08:02 am

Voter ID the hot topic in Raleigh

By The Free Press

With the North Carolina General Assembly getting set to swing into session next week, lawmakers will find their plates full of pressing issues when they take their seats in the House and Senate.

However, there probably isn't a bigger issue on their agenda than a move to force voters to produce identification when they go to vote, informally known as "voter ID." Republicans and politicians on the "right" side of the aisle are mostly for voter ID; Democrats and those on the "left" are not.

Voter ID was one of the most hotly-debated issues in November's general election in the Tar Heel state -- and North Carolina voters spoke with their ballots, sending a supermajority of Republicans to the House and Senate, meaning laws passed by those entities are veto-proof.

However, a veto probably won't be much of an issue over at least the next two years, as N.C. voters also elected a Republican governor and lieutenant governor in November.

One of those GOP legislators returning to Raleigh is N.C. Sen. Louis Pate, a strong advocate for voter ID. Pate has served in both the N.C. Senate and N.C. House.

"I think it's necessary to ensure the integrity of the ballot box," Pate said.

Pate said he has had citizens contact him about voter irregularities in the past.

"I've had citizens offer to write sworn affidavits about how their votes have been stolen from them by someone who had come in earlier and said, 'I'm John Doe and I live at such-and-such address' and they were (allowed) to vote," Pate said. "When the real John Doe showed up, their vote had already been taken from someone else."

Freshman N.C. Rep. George Graham, D-Lenoir, said he sees no need for voter ID. The former longtime Lenoir County Commissioners chairman said he had not heard of any cases in Lenoir County like those brought up by Pate.

"I'm not aware of any violations in Lenoir County, where I've served the last 30 years," Graham said. "I can't think of any situation of voter fraud or any problems with voter registration."

Courtney Patterson, the fourth vice president of the North Carolina NAACP, said laws already on the book -- which require citizens to sign in to vote -- are sufficient.

"The problem isn't voter ID, it's voter suppression," Patterson said. "If you violate the (signature law), you will be imprisoned for five years. ... There's no need for a voter ID law, except to suppress the vote."

In October, when he was crossing North Carolina in an effort to energize the African-American voting bloc for the general election, NAACP President Dr. William Barber addressed voter ID before a standing-room-only crowd at the St. Augustus AME Zion Church.

"We know that voter ID is nothing more than a 21st-century poll tax," Barber said in his Oct. 25 speech. "That's why we stood against it, that's why we won, that's why we beat it back, that's why we don't have it in North Carolina."

However, even Graham recognizes that with the supermajority of Republicans in the N.C. House and N.C. Senate, it's likely the voter ID issue will pass in 2013.

"Based on the way the General Assembly is organized at this point and time ... if (the Republicans) want it to pass, they're going to pass it," Graham said. "What happens after they pass it, though, is a fight in the courts."

Bryan C. Hanks can be reached at 252-559-1074 or at Bryan.Hanks@Kinston.com. Follow him on Twitter at BCHanks and check out his blog at bhanks.encblogs.com.

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(c)2013 The Free Press (Kinston, N.C.)

Visit The Free Press (Kinston, N.C.) at www.kinston.com

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10 Comments

  1. Pingback: School safety remains hot topic in Hartford | Easypic.biz

  2. mrsgunnut10Comment by mrsgunnut10
    January 26, 2013 @ 10:44 am

    I read the above Article. No where, does it reference the problems that were caused by Obama’s National Labor Relation Board. Stopping that Aircraft Manufacting Plant (or trying to) from building the Plant because of the “Right to Work” argument was assinine. It is well known that Obama tells those people what to do and with the recent Federal Judges ruling, about his three “appointments” while the Senate WAS in session proves it. What baffles me is: Why would people, in North Carolina, vote for Obama to be President, when he tried to stop hundreds of Jobs from coming into their State ?? Why, Why, Why – Comments Anybody ?? Thank you for your time. TSgt., USAF Retired.

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    • vevaComment by veva
      January 26, 2013 @ 6:20 pm

      This happened in SOUTH Carolina, and it is a “Right to Work” state!

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  3. BobinmsComment by Bobinms
    January 26, 2013 @ 12:32 pm

    gunnut10
    If I’m not mistaken Boeing was going to South Carolina, not North Carolina

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  4. msgtazComment by msgtaz
    January 26, 2013 @ 12:53 pm

    Why is the LIBs fighting Voter ID, they have it in Illinois Obama home State and no one has said anything..Go Figure…..We The People

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    • vevaComment by veva
      January 26, 2013 @ 6:18 pm

      Are you sure Voter ID is in Illinois? What kind of identification is required? Cook County has always had dead people voting. If the voting rolls have not been purged of past, now dead voters, voters who moved out of state and voters originally illegally registered, their votes could still be accepted. Go to judicialwatch.com and learn more about fraud voting, in many states. Voter ID should require a photo AND a fingerprint, when registering and at every polling place.

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    • nickster99Comment by nickster99
      February 5, 2013 @ 8:21 am

      In Illinois you need a Certificate of Death in order to vote. Or a dog license.

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  5. mysticComment by mystic
    January 26, 2013 @ 6:13 pm

    I live in one of the most liberal states in the union, California. We HAVE to show ID, either a student card, State ID or valid D.L. in order to vote. I don’t hear screams of voter suppression here…and wouldn’t you if it was going on seeing as it is one of the most liberal states in the Union?

    Vote by mail has more fraud inlaid within it then walk in votes. It’s gotten so bad that hubby and I purposely walk in our vote packet and drop it into the box at a voter station. And guess what..I still have to show ID and proper address in order to drop it into their voter box.

    I even had two men show up at my door this last election as their records had shown I had not ‘voted’ yet. I explained where I had dropped off my ballot…..they called their ‘base’ right then and there and confirmed I had voted and my address was taken off the list. This had never happened before…kinda creeped me out a bit.

    Why aren’t voter laws regulated to all 50 states? Why isn’t a national election regulated so that all 50 states constituents on the same playing field? Some states have a whole month or two weeks to walk in and vote…not talking mail in ballots here. As we became aware, many of our armed service men and women were kept from voting due to an error in the ballots.

    This is an easy logistical management issue… not voter suppression issue. The outcome may have been the same, it may not have been…it sure as heck would have been transparent and on the up and up imo had we a national law that sets voter logistics for all voters in all 50 states.

    ~M

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    • vevaComment by veva
      January 26, 2013 @ 6:37 pm

      I for one don’t want anymore federal level laws; the states should do that. And many are requiring Voter ID, because there IS too much vote fraud. Just check it out here: http://www.judicialwatch.com . They and “True the Vote” have been working to clean up the voter rolls. Real investigative work has proven there is fraudulent voting. Videos have been made of persons asking for a ballot for someone other than who they are. And the ballot was given them! The New Hampshire govenor vetoed a state bill for Voter ID, saying it didn’t happen there. So someone made a video of someone OTHER than the govenor giving his name and receiving a ballot. The video was shown to the govenor. A new bill for Voter ID in N.H. was submitted, and was signed! Judicial Watch warned many states to purge their voter rolls. If they didn’t, they would be, and have been, sued. IN Ohio alone, in some counties, there were more ballots voted than there were voters old enough to vote! Fraud? How did that affect the presidential election outcome? This happened in more than one state! No one should be able to take office, until such irregularities are investigated. Support Judicial Watch, and help them stop those who win by lying, cheating and stealing elections!

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    • WarpfieldComment by Warpfield
      January 28, 2013 @ 5:05 pm

      That is incorrect. There is no ID requirement at the polls in California when voting. The poll worker will ask for your name, then you simply sign your name on the line. No ID required.

      It would be relatively easy for someone to attend the polls early when they first open and vote in your behalf.

      Needless to say, I am always at the polls when they first open.

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  6. petersenonmainComment by petersenonmain
    January 26, 2013 @ 7:46 pm

    The way to stop any argument would be to have electronic finger print reader at all polls and have all registrations have a finger print on them at a central data base that would automatically read the prints on both the registration and the print at the polling place and be tied into the central data base in real time. If anyone tried to vote twice it would be a class C felony with a required min 5 year prison sentence and never be able to vote again.

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  7. Pingback: Voter ID the hot topic in Raleigh | I Support Voter ID

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