RALEIGH – Republican passed Voter ID legislation in 2013. Leftists contested it in court, found a friendly activist judge to call it racist, and had it nullified. But the people of North Carolina still saw Voter ID for what it was, common sense election security. So, five years later, the Republican majorities on Jones Street appealed directly to the people, via a ballot referendum to add Voter ID requirements to the N.C. Constitution.
A clear majority of voters approved, the state constitution was amended, and the legislature moved to codify the details in law. The Leftists, however, were undeterred by the broad support of the people and the NAACP subsequently filed another lawsuit to stop that which voters approved of – common sense voter identification requirements.
The latest lawsuit was done in such a way as to limit the ability of legislative leaders to defend against it; the suit does not name the Speaker, or Senate leader, as defendants.
“The NAACP filed the lawsuit the morning after the veto override, but only named Gov. Cooper and the now defunct State Board of Elections as defendants, all of whom will likely be represented by North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein.
“Gov. Cooper and Atty. General Stein have deliberately undermined the General Assembly’s efforts to enact voter ID on numerous occasions,” said Berger and Moore.
“It is very clear from both their words and actions that they cannot be trusted to defend voter ID, which is why the NAACP deliberately left legislators who enacted the voter ID law out of the lawsuit.””
So House Speaker Tim Moore and Senate leader Phil Berger have taken it upon themselves to file the necessary motion in court in order to defend the will of the people. Gov. Cooper and Attorney General Josh Stein, both Democrats who have actively worked against Voter ID, can in no way be trusted to defend the measure in court.
In a press release, Berger and Moore document why they cannot be trusted:
“In his veto of the voter ID implementing legislation, Gov. Cooper included a message that was an argument against voter ID in general rather than anything disputing the provisions in the bill. He said the bill, “was designed to suppress the rights of minority, poor and elderly voters,” despite the fact that it was co-sponsored by former Democratic Senator Joel Ford.
In addition to his veto message, Gov. Cooper also vigorously fought against the General Assembly’s efforts to enact the 2013 voter ID law in his role as North Carolina Attorney General. He posted a petition online for those opposed to the bill to ask Gov. Pat. McCrory to veto it and even sent a letter to McCrory himself, urging the governor to veto the bill, calling the law “unnecessary, expensive and burdensome.”
Cooper took his anti-voter ID stance a step further when he refused to fulfil his duties as Attorney General and participate in the petition for certiorari seeking review of the Fourth Circuit’s ruling striking down the voter ID law.
Attorney General Stein also has a track record in opposition to voter ID in North Carolina. In 2013 when the law passed the General Assembly, Stein was very vocal in his opposition to the bill while a member of the state Senate. Then, shortly after taking over as Attorney General in 2017, he moved to dismiss the state’s petition for certiorari from the Fourth Circuit’s ruling striking down the voter ID law, effectively derailing the state’s US Supreme Court Case.”
Cooper and Stein may have been catapulted into statewide offices by Democrats, but that shouldn’t absolve them of their responsibilities as governor and attorney general, respectively. Being that they have repeatedly demonstrated a willingness to oppose the will of the people in order to satisfy the race-baiting contingent of their voting base, it is absolutely necessary that the legislative leaders intervene to defend Voter ID in court.