The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals has reversed a federal district court’s denial of a preliminary injunction on some parts of North Carolina’s controversial new voter ID law. The higher court will delay elimination of same-day registration and prohibition on counting out-of-precinct ballots. “The court’s order safeguards the vote for tens of thousands of North Carolinians. It means they will continue to be able to use same-day registration, just as they have during the last three federal elections,” said Dale Ho, director of the ACLU’s Voting Rights Project, in a statement.
But, the appeals court refused to issue a temporary injunction reducing early-voting days, the elimination of the discretion of county boards of elections to keep the polls open an additional hour on Election Day, the elimination of pre-registration of sixteen and seventeen-year-olds who will not be eighteen years old by the next general election, and the soft roll-out of voter identification requirements that will go into effect in 2016.
“With respect to these provisions, we conclude that, although Plaintiffs may ultimately succeed at trial, they have not met their burden of satisfying all elements necessary for a preliminary injunction,” wrote the court in its opinion.