Some Forsyth County commissioners are asking state lawmakers to approve a voter identification bill if it comes before the General Assembly next year. County commissioners held their annual meeting on Thursday with lawmakers representing Forsyth County in the state house and senate. A bill requiring voter ID passed the N.C. General Assembly in 2011, only to meet with a veto by Democratic Gov. Bev Perdue. An attempt by Republicans to override the veto fell short of the required two-thirds veto.
Although some advocates say voter identification is needed to prevent fraud, Commissioner Bill Whiteheart said Thursday that fraud is not the issue: People are required to present proof of identity in all kinds of transactions today, he said, and voting should be no different.
Rep. Earline Parmon, D-Forsyth, said after her meeting Thursday with the board that she would oppose any effort to bring in voter identification. She said voter identification measures can be an attempt to suppress the vote.
Parmon will be sitting in the N.C. Senate come January, since she left her house seat to run for N.C. Senate District 32. Because of all the legislative turnover, Thursday’s meeting was lightly attended by lawmakers. Besides Parmon, present were Rep. Julia Howard, R-Davie, and incoming representatives Ed Hanes and Debra Conrad, who is a member of the county board of commissioners through the end of the year.