In the swing state of North Carolina, a fight for early voting rights that seemed to end with a strongly worded federal court ruling last month, may be just getting started. That fight began in 2013, when the state made cuts to early voting, created a photo ID requirement and eliminated same-day registration, out-of-precinct voting, and pre-registration of high school students. More than half of all voters there use early voting, and African-Americans do so at higher rates than whites. African-Americans also tend to overwhelmingly vote for Democrats. In July of this year, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals struck down major parts of the overhaul. The three-judge panel ruled those changes targeted African-Americans “with almost surgical precision.”
Now, voting rights advocates say some Republicans will try to sidestep that decision on Thursday, when the State Board of Elections will consider new plans that technically follow that ruling but raise other issues.
The U.S. Justice Department, the North Carolina NAACP, the League of Women Voters, and others brought the original case.