The Republican-led North Carolina House late Wednesday muscled through legislation requiring voters to show photo identification before casting an in-person ballot, despite Democratic accusations the bill is a voter suppression measure designed to boost GOP political fortunes.
By a vote of 67-50, the House gave tentative approval to the voter ID restrictions just before midnight at the close of a marathon day in which General Assembly members considered scores of bills as a self-imposed procedural deadline late Thursday approached. The party-line vote, however, appears to keep Republicans a few votes short of overcoming any potential veto by Democratic Gov. Beverly Perdue.
The measure received about 10 minutes of debate for the first of two required votes before the new day began. House Speaker Thom Tillis, R-Mecklenburg, pledged a longer discussion later Thursday on the divisive bill.
The bill would demand a potential voter provide one of eight forms of photo ID, including new voter cards that would be generated by county elections boards and offered for free. A person who doesn’t have a photo ID could cast a provisional ballot.
… Democratic members said the fraud problem is exaggerated and the ID requirement would discourage people from voting, especially older people who may not have a photo ID, as well as black voters, and women. Republican leaders in about half the states have been pushing this year to require voters to show photo ID at the polls.
“You all know that I do that there is a Republican effort from across the country to enact voter ID laws for the purpose of suppressing voting,” said House Minority Leader Joe Hackney, D-Orange. “You ought not to be running this bill, and you ought to vote against it.”
Full Article: Voter ID bill given initial OK on NC House floor – NewsTimes.