News: Quick Takes

Cooper vetoes voter ID bill; fate of elections board bill uncertain

Gov. Roy Cooper in 2018 (CJ file photo)
Gov. Roy Cooper in 2018 (CJ file photo)

As expected, Gov. Roy Cooper Friday vetoed Senate Bill 824, a measure implementing the voter identification requirement enacted in November by voters in a constitutional referendum.

In his veto message, Cooper called the measure “sinister and cynical.”

“It was designed to suppress the rights of minority, poor and elderly voters. The cost of disenfranchising those voters or any citizens is too high, and the risk of taking away the fundamental right to vote is too great, for this law to take effect,” Cooper said.

The General Assembly must pass enabling language implementing the constitutional mandate at some point. The bill passed 67-40 in the House and 25-7 in the Senate, more than the three-fifths needed to override the veto.

If the legislature cannot override before the end of the year, the 2019 legislative session will take up a new bill.

In a statement issued late Friday, House Speaker Tim Moore, R-Cleveland, said, “We are certainly disappointed that Governor Cooper chose to ignore the will of the people and reject a commonsense election integrity measure that is common in most states, but the North Carolina House will override his veto as soon as possible.”

Moore noted 34 states have some sort of photo ID requirement to vote.

Meantime, the governor’s office hasn’t indicated if Cooper will sign or veto House Bill 1029, the measures passed this week by overwhelming margins which restores the State Board of Elections and the State Ethics Commissions as separate agencies.

Editor’s note: This story was corrected to note the legislature had sufficient votes to override a veto when the bill passed and updated to include remarks from House Speaker Tim Moore.

  • Charles Newman

    Probably the last chance for anything good to be accomplished for the next two years!

  • QuitBS

    And this fool (Roy Cooper) is a lawyer? Has he ever read the 2008 SCOTUS decision upholding Voter ID laws?
    Maybe our NC legislators can pass this before the year’s end while they still have a super majority.
    Otherwise, the Democrats are in business to steal amd defraud elections!

    Supreme Court’s
    6–3 decision in 2008 upholding Indiana’s voter-ID law. The liberal Justice John
    Paul Stevens wrote the majority opinion. The Court held that “there is no
    question about the legitimacy or importance of the State’s interest in counting
    only the votes of eligible voters,” and “we cannot conclude that the statute
    imposes ‘excessively burdensome requirements’ on any class of voters.” The
    decision cited the finding of a district judge that plaintiffs had “not
    introduced evidence of a single, individual Indiana resident who will be unable
    to vote as a result of the law.”
    I guess Roy Cooper is like Obama. He only obeyed laws he agreed with!

  • Junius Daniel

    If the governor is willing to suspend the necessities of identification in order to drive and or buy spirits, then I will see some sort of merit to his approach.

    That said, what I see at present is he is attempting to protest the proliferation of a system, in our state, to sufficiently override the will of The Native White Southerner, in order to effectively render it null and void.

    Virginia has already been usurpt in such a manner, and I have little doubt we are in peril of it here.

    We are now the Northern Frontier of The Southern Confederacy, and a weak wall we make, for we are overridden not only by aliens to The South, but, as well, by university-trained scalawags, and Southern sophisticates, who, if they ever read what I am writing here, would roll their eyes and smile with anxious smugness at the sign of a Southerner who is so uncouth as to still dare to think himself one.