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NAACP Seeks Injunction To Block Voter ID Requirement In March Primary

Voter Sticker
Vox Efx on Flickr
The North Carolina voter ID lawsuit will go to trial in January.

The NAACP is seeking an injunction to halt the state's new voter identification law in the March primary elections.

Litigation over the law was put on hold until January, after legislators amended it this summer. Under the revised law, voters who don't have state-issued IDs must fill out a form explaining why they couldn't get one.

North Carolina NAACP President Rev. William Barber says an amendment to the law now requires voters without IDs to fill out a form explaining why they couldn't get one. Barber says that's confusing and intimidating.

"You start forcing people on the spot to have to read enormous amounts of documents. And then you say if they make one small mistake, the document could be seen as a form of perjury, and then they could actually get a felony."

Barber adds that poll workers and the public haven't been properly educated about the law, which was amended this summer.

"Our state legislature has created so much confusion, and so much uncertainty, and so much potential for suppression that we cannot implement a law that we believe, once examined by the courts and the constitution will be proven illegal."

Jay DeLancy of the nonprofit Voter Integrity Project supports the voter ID requirement, adding that the state is working to help people get proper documentation. He says IDs are important to prevent voter fraud.

"It's critical that the public believe in their electoral process. And when you see organizations fighting this hard against voter ID, it raises real suspicions about what their motives are."

The voter ID case is scheduled to go to trial January 25th.

Rebecca Martinez produces podcasts at WUNC. She’s been at the station since 2013, when she produced Morning Edition and reported for newscasts and radio features. Rebecca also serves on WUNC’s Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accountability (IDEA) Committee.
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