The Republican leadership at the N.C. General Assembly pledged Tuesday to make a second attempt at passing a controversial measure requiring photo identification at polling places. A bill requiring a government-issued photo ID to vote was vetoed by former Democratic Gov. Bev Perdue in 2011, but Republican Gov. Pat McCrory has signaled that he would not veto a new proposal. Supporters of a voter ID law cite preventing voter fraud and protecting the sanctity of voting as reasons for filing a bill this session. “We want to make sure people who show up to vote are who they say they are,” said Rep. David Lewis, R-Harnett, chairman of the House elections committee, after Tuesday’s press conference. Lewis said legislators would file a bill this month and hold a vote in April.
But Rep. Rodney Moore, D-Mecklenburg, said the bill would disproportionately impact elderly and minority voters because they are the residents most likely to lack a photo ID.
More than 600,000 registered voters in North Carolina do not have a traditional form of photo ID, such as a driver’s license, according to a report by the State Board of Elections.
Among these voters, 34 percent are between the ages of 41 and 65, and about 30 percent are black.
“What I’m concerned about,” Moore said, “is how it would disenfranchise certain groups of voters.”
Lewis said student IDs would qualify as photo identification.