Holder to sue North Carolina over voter-ID law

posted at 9:21 am on September 30, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

It’s not just Texas where Attorney General Eric Holder wants to get around the Supreme Court’s ruling in Shelby County. The Department of Justice will announce this morning that they will file a lawsuit to block North Carolina’s voter-ID law, just as they did in Texas, and probably will in all of the former pre-clearance states that attempt to enforce one:

The U.S. Department of Justice will file a lawsuit Monday to stop North Carolina’s new voter ID law, which critics have said is the most sweeping law of its kind, according to a person briefed on the department’s plans.

Attorney General Eric Holder, who has said he will fight state voting laws that he sees as discriminatory, will announce the lawsuit at noon Monday, along with the three U.S. attorneys from the state. …

The North Carolina ID law, which was signed by Gov. Pat McCrory in August, goes into effect for the 2016 elections. It requires voters to show a valid, government-issued ID before casting a ballot. It also has a number of other provisions, which will be challenged in the federal lawsuit, according to the person briefed on the Justice Department’s plans.

Among them: the elimination of seven days of early voting; the elimination of same-day registration during early voting; the prohibition against counting provisional ballots that are cast when a voter shows up at the wrong polling place.

The suit will allege explicit discriminatory intent on the part of North Carolina’s legislature, according to ABC News:

“North Carolina enacted these provisions with a discriminatory purpose to deny African-Americans equal access to voting,” and the provisions “will have the result of denying or abridging an equal opportunity to vote for African-Americans,” the source briefed on the lawsuit said.

The source cited a report by North Carolina’s State Board of Elections four months ago, showing that while African-Americans comprise 22 percent of registered voters in North Carolina, African-Americans account for 34 percent of voters who do not have an ID issued by the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles.

Governor Pat McCrory scoffed at the notion last month:

“North Carolinians overwhelmingly support a common sense law that requires voters to present photo identification in order to cast a ballot,” McCrory said in a statement last month. “Common practices like boarding an airplane and purchasing Sudafed require photo ID, and we should expect nothing less for the protection of our right to vote.”

This is yet another attempt by Holder to get around the loss of pre-clearance by forcing the courts to provide Justice a de facto pre-clearance in the courts.  However, it has less than a good chance of working, thanks to the Supreme Court’s explicit actions in Shelby County.  In all other states, Justice had to wait before suing states over voting laws to show actual damages, ie, actual and systemic discrimination rather than rational action to protect the validity of the ballot.  The court ruled this summer that the formula in the Voting Rights Act that Congress created to violate the states’ expectations of sovereignty and equal process had become irrational after 50 years.

Holder needs to wait to use those preclearance powers for Congress to come up with a new formula that allows Justice to intervene prior to actual damages, but Congress is clearly not interested in doing so.  As I have repeatedly noted, this does not prevent the DoJ from pursuing real instances of racial discrimination through Section 2 of the VRA, but it does force the DoJ to proceed as it does with the forty-plus other states by (a) waiting for the laws to take effect, and (b) bearing the burden of proof that the laws are discriminatory in intent and practice, neither of which they had to do during the pre-clearance era. Given the court’s ruling this summer, I’d bet that they will take a very dim view of Holder’s attempt to push a political strategy to reconstitute preclearance through the federal courts rather than Congress.


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Why isn’t Holder just doing his job?

OmahaConservative on September 30, 2013 at 9:24 AM

oh this shiz again?

Zaggs on September 30, 2013 at 9:25 AM

Why isn’t Holder just doing his job?

OmahaConservative on September 30, 2013 at 9:24 AM

Undermining the US apparently is his job.

EA_MAN on September 30, 2013 at 9:30 AM

The Justice Department will ultimately lose. This lawsuit and the one in Texas is Eric Holder and the lazy stupid coward messing with the 2014 elections.

Happy Nomad on September 30, 2013 at 9:30 AM

BTW, I’m not sure that NC would have to follow a federal courts decision if Holder goes judge shopping, which he will. If I were NC, TX, or any other state I would ignore Holder and any federal court other than the SCOTUS on this issue.

Tater Salad on September 30, 2013 at 9:31 AM

Assassination of US Ambassador ………

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Keeping election results honest ……..

“Hey, stop that!”

fogw on September 30, 2013 at 9:32 AM

They’re just pissed it makes it harder to cheat.

Tater Salad on September 30, 2013 at 9:32 AM

Given the court’s ruling this summer, I’d bet that they will take a very dim view of Holder’s attempt to push a political strategy to reconstitute preclearance through the federal courts rather than Congress.

I would love to see Holder’s “luck” finally run out.

DaveDief on September 30, 2013 at 9:33 AM

It will be interesting the see how strongly our Attorney General, Roy Cooper, defends this. He is getting ready to challenge Pat McCrory for the Governorship and is a big Dem. I am sure he is secretly happy that Holder has filed this lawsuit.

When the law was passed earlier this year, a 92 year old woman filed a lawsuit against it. She has a compelling story of how challenging it was to get registered to vote back in the era of Jim Crow, etc. Of course, she HAS a driver’s license, so this law would not impede her at all. http://www.nationalreview.com/article/356112/lefts-faux-martyr-sterling-beard

ConservativeMom on September 30, 2013 at 9:34 AM

A scumbag of the highest order. We know what this administration’s agenda is now. You can’t hide it and America is on to you and the rest of the traitors. Your time is coming…..

HomeoftheBrave on September 30, 2013 at 9:35 AM

Holder is just pi$$ed because he can’t vote 50 times in the NC ballot lines like he did last election…

…even though he doesn’t even have a residency here.

Turtle317 on September 30, 2013 at 9:40 AM

The source cited a report by North Carolina’s State Board of Elections four months ago, showing that while African-Americans comprise 22 percent of registered voters in North Carolina, African-Americans account for 34 percent of voters who do not have an ID issued by the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles.

We recently learned that Holder’s DOJ was holding seminars for black preachers across the country, to teach them how to run GOTV and fundraising operations for the Obama campaign without running into trouble with the IRS.

Any bets that there will be a similar effort to keep blacks and other minorities from obtaining government-issued IDs (deliberately, and with the minorities’ cooperation), so that Holder can then use that as evidence of discriminatory impact in these bogus lawsuits against the states that have laws requiring voter ID?

AZCoyote on September 30, 2013 at 9:40 AM

Will people have to show an ID to sign up for Obamacare? Will Holder sue?

Fallon on September 30, 2013 at 9:40 AM

What SWalker said.

M240H on September 30, 2013 at 9:40 AM

A photo ID and proof of citizenship must be produced before any enrollment, service or treatment as is specifically required by the obviously ‘racist’ Affordable Care Act.

Democrats = Hypocrites

Democrats = theTEATparty

Resist We Much on September 30, 2013 at 9:40 AM

This is just harassment by Holder. If people can make it to a polling place, they can certainly make it to the local DMV and get a FREE state I.D. card which will be made available. SCOTUS has already held that voter I.D. laws are NOT discriminatory.

TarheelBen on September 30, 2013 at 9:41 AM

Given the court’s ruling this summer, I’d bet that they will take a very dim view of Holder’s attempt to push a political strategy to reconstitute preclearance through the federal courts rather than Congress.

Irrelevant. Didn’t the prior lawsuit against Texas keep that state’s voter ID law from going into effect until after the 2012 election?

None of this has anything to do with actually preventing discrimination or voter disenfranchisement, and everything to do with Holder attempting to manipulate the election process in favor of the Democratic Party.

NotCoach on September 30, 2013 at 9:41 AM

But when it comes to ObamaCare, don’t forget — it’s the law of the land! Supreme Court has ruled! Apparently that doesn’t apply to laws the O administration doesn’t agree with.

lizzieillinois on September 30, 2013 at 9:42 AM

I’m so proud of my state right now.

It’s bizarro world where being sued by the DOJ is a badge of honor, but I’ll take it and wear it with aplomb.

SteveInRTP on September 30, 2013 at 9:42 AM

The suit will allege explicit discriminatory intent on the part of North Carolina’s legislature,

Eric Holder is a Vulcan, who can do a mind meld and discern the intent of hundreds of people who were chosen by citizens to enact laws?

Who knew?

This is rank fascism.

rbj on September 30, 2013 at 9:44 AM

Sue the airports so we don’t have to show ID anymore. And the banks. I hate showing people my drivers license. It’s so racist.

Akzed on September 30, 2013 at 9:44 AM

It’s bizarro world where being sued by the DOJ is a badge of honor, but I’ll take it and wear it with aplomb.

SteveInRTP on September 30, 2013 at 9:42 AM

If that’s true, then AZ must be the most honorable state in the nation. Holder sues us all the time, and it has cost us millions. On the upside, it keeps lots of AZ lawyers and paralegals from being out of work in this shitty Obama economy. ;)

AZCoyote on September 30, 2013 at 9:47 AM

I can’t wait to see Holder in prison one day…rarely does one that corrupt get away with it forever.

Alinsky on September 30, 2013 at 9:47 AM

rrelevant. Didn’t the prior lawsuit against Texas keep that state’s voter ID law from going into effect until after the 2012 election?

None of this has anything to do with actually preventing discrimination or voter disenfranchisement, and everything to do with Holder attempting to manipulate the election process in favor of the Democratic Party.

NotCoach on September 30, 2013 at 9:41 AM

It’s different now after the SCOTUS ruling, the laws are no in place and enforceable until and after the they been adjudicated. Therefore in the upcoming elections the laws will be in place unless completely overturned.

Tater Salad on September 30, 2013 at 9:50 AM

while African-Americans comprise 22 percent of registered voters in North Carolina, African-Americans account for 34 percent of voters who do not have an ID issued by the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles.

It’s plain to see that the NC DMV is what’s racist here. Why doesn’t Holder sue the DMV?!

Shy Guy on September 30, 2013 at 9:52 AM

Holder is reason # 2 that we need to get win the Senate. If this doesn’t get Republicans out to vote in NC then nothing will.

BetseyRoss on September 30, 2013 at 9:52 AM

They’re just pissed it makes it harder to cheat.

Tater Salad on September 30, 2013 at 9:32 AM

100% the only reason Holder is doing this. Voter ID laws actually INCREASE voter participation. It’s only about keeping the fraud.

rrpjr on September 30, 2013 at 9:53 AM

Doesn’t this make Holder a racist?

birdwatcher on September 30, 2013 at 9:53 AM

Why isn’t Holder just doing his job?

OmahaConservative

Oh silly serf. He IS doing his job…….that Obama hired him for.

Zaggs on September 30, 2013 at 9:54 AM

If we only had a ‘third estate’ worthy of the title. The moment this little weasel refused to prosecute the two Black Panthers who stood in front of the voting booth, billy clubs in hand, for all the world to see, it should have been game, set, and match.

Had this been two clansmen, and had the AG who refused to prosecute been white, he would have been driven from office by our national outrage, and rightfully so.

CaptFlood on September 30, 2013 at 9:55 AM

It’s different now after the SCOTUS ruling, the laws are no in place and enforceable until and after the they been adjudicated. Therefore in the upcoming elections the laws will be in place unless completely overturned.

Tater Salad on September 30, 2013 at 9:50 AM

Unless Holder successfully gains a temporary injunction against them. And that will be the full court press early on in this process. If the courts reject an injunction request I wouldn’t be surprised if these suits are dropped.

NotCoach on September 30, 2013 at 10:00 AM

The new McCarthyites; a racist under every bed.

LizardLips on September 30, 2013 at 10:05 AM

Every time voter ID comes up about preventing blacks from voting I hear that racist dog whistle from the liberals that think blacks are to stupid to handle the requirements for voting.

Dr. Frank Enstine on September 30, 2013 at 10:06 AM

Every time voter ID comes up about preventing blacks from voting I hear that racist dog whistle from the liberals that think blacks are to stupid to handle the requirements for voting.

Dr. Frank Enstine on September 30, 2013 at 10:06 AM

Yeah, the TSA prevents blacks from flying and nobody says a word. ///sarc

http://washingtonexaminer.com/24-things-that-require-a-photo-id/article/2534254

Fallon on September 30, 2013 at 10:10 AM

Several of the lawsuits against O-care were tossed for no standing-i.e., plaintiffs could not show harm because law wasn’t fully in effect yet, at least as I understood it.
So, this should be tossed for the same reasons-can’t show harm for something that hasn’t been implemented yet.

questionmark on September 30, 2013 at 10:14 AM

I was under the impression that after the Supreme Court ruling the DOJ had to have proof actual discrimination occurred or was occurring before they could bring any lawsuit over voter’s rights. Am I mistaken?

Johnnyreb on September 30, 2013 at 10:15 AM

When the government seeks to deny you the very dignity of your God-given freedom through the open abuse of law, what can the law-abiding do?

Isn’t law after all, that which has always been decreed from on high by every dictator, tyrant, king throughout history that was their means of denying lesser creatures freedom?

On the other hand all moral law must be followed or altered by legitimate means.

Don L on September 30, 2013 at 10:15 AM

And, for the argument that buying liquor or flying is not a right, like voting is… In Illinois have to show an ID (and apply for a FOID card) to buy a gun, which is also a right.

Fallon on September 30, 2013 at 10:16 AM

Unless Holder successfully gains a temporary injunction against them. And that will be the full court press early on in this process. If the courts reject an injunction request I wouldn’t be surprised if these suits are dropped.

NotCoach on September 30, 2013 at 10:00 AM

If I were the states I would cause a bit of a crisis and ignore the federal courts. Given the SCOTUS ruling, I would question whether a federal court has standing in a state issue, other than the SCOTUS.

Tater Salad on September 30, 2013 at 10:30 AM

No need to come to NC, Mr. Holder.

I’ll stand outside the voting site dressed in all black holding a billy club to insure a fair election.

That’s standard federal protocol, right?

mankai on September 30, 2013 at 10:33 AM

My wife just changed banks and we had to show two pieces of identification (one a photo ID) in order to open a checking account at her new bank. Why don’t Obama and Holder have a problem with that?

bw222 on September 30, 2013 at 10:33 AM

“North Carolina enacted these provisions with a discriminatory purpose to deny African-Americans equal access to voting,”

Too bad Blacks are genetically lacking, so as to abide by the same rules as other races, isn’t it?

At least that’s the message of the Democrat Party.

MNHawk on September 30, 2013 at 10:35 AM

This is all about making the GOP look racist, keeping black voters entrenched on the Dem side, and increasing black turnout for 2014 & 2016. Almost everything in the Obama administration is about the “next election”…community organizer 24-7.

FreeManOtis on September 30, 2013 at 10:42 AM

Just a continuation of the policy that told Black Panthers with billy clubs that chased white voters away from polling places: “Keep up the good work!”

Socratease on September 30, 2013 at 10:46 AM

What I find amazing is that the NSA knows what color underwear you are wearing, the paper companies know whether you use Charmin or Northern toilet paper, etc. Yet nobody has ever conducted a statistically valid poll on the question of who has a valid ID and who doesn’t. Wouldn’t that be a faster and cheaper route to resolve this? Or is it possible that they don’t want that question answered?

teejk on September 30, 2013 at 11:06 AM

My kids (in NC) have to show two proofs of residency to participate in a school sport.

mankai on September 30, 2013 at 11:06 AM

Partial list of things you can’t do without a photo ID:

•Applying for welfare, food stamps, or other government assistance
•Using an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card, issued to welfare recipients
•Obtaining medical care using Medicaid
•Obtaining a library card
•Picking up mail at the U.S. Postal Service
•Visiting the White House, National Archives, Statue of Liberty, Smithsonian, NASA, Hoover Dam, military bases, etc.
•Entering many government buildings, esp. law enforcement, DHS, etc.

Complete list at:
http://piqscore.com/2012/11/should-a-photo-id-be-required-to-vote/

VastRightWingConspirator on September 30, 2013 at 11:11 AM

Holder is excrement with a human silhouette.

To hell with that bastard.

Murphy9 on September 30, 2013 at 11:16 AM

This is all about making the GOP look racist, keeping black voters entrenched on the Dem side, and increasing black turnout for 2014 & 2016. Almost everything in the Obama administration is about the “next election”…community organizer 24-7.

FreeManOtis on September 30, 2013 at 10:42 AM

Exactly. It does not matter if the courts throw these suits out, in fact that will just give the race-mongers another issue – “white judges working with Republicans to keep you from voting.” It’s all bread and circuses to keep black voters in the fold and not asking why the first black president has done nothing to help them find a job.

I keep challenging all the community organizer types to use their skills to go out in the community and make sure everyone has ID. It’s clear in today’s world that not having a photo ID is a significant disadvantage for anyone and prevents them from fully engaging in commerce of all kids. So why isn’t this problem being solved by all those do-gooders who care so much? Why don’t they care more about eliminating this tragic inequality instead of whining about voter ID laws? It isn’t that hard to offer transportation and drivers ed to people so they can get a license, or simply take them to the DMV for a free state ID.

rockmom on September 30, 2013 at 11:16 AM

Don’t actual damages have to be shown before a lawsuit can be filed? No one has been impacted yet. And no one will be either.

cadams on September 30, 2013 at 11:17 AM

Undermining the US apparently is his job.

EA_MAN on September 30, 2013 at 9:30 AM

Why, yes it is. So glad you mentioned that.

hawkeye54 on September 30, 2013 at 11:19 AM

My kids (in NC) have to show two proofs of residency to participate in a school sport.

mankai on September 30, 2013 at 11:06 AM

Yes, but voting is a whole different ball game. Forcing a person to show valid ID at a polling place kinda undermines the dems plans for turning every state blue. One person – one LEGAL vote by appropriate identification can be quite harmful to the dems objectives.

hawkeye54 on September 30, 2013 at 11:22 AM

Can someone please sue Holder for gross incompetence?

sadatoni on September 30, 2013 at 11:27 AM

I wonder why Florida gets a pass on this? I guess because it was in place before The Won got in office.

Cindy Munford on September 30, 2013 at 11:30 AM

Personally, I don’t think the NC law goes far enough:

1) 2 forms of photo ID, one government issued, the other can be student ID, etc.
2) no early voting, except for military
3) no same day registration
4) you have to re-register every 10 years or so (keeps the dead from voting).

nazo311 on September 30, 2013 at 11:38 AM

Thug Holder, an ID will be needed to apply for obama’care’, you turkey.

Schadenfreude on September 30, 2013 at 11:49 AM

Holder/obama/Sibelius must be racists.

IDs are needed to apply for obama’care’. It’s in the law.

Schadenfreude on September 30, 2013 at 11:50 AM

Holder is setting himself up for a big smack down. Hope it’s worth it by pandering to the Democratic base.

GarandFan on September 30, 2013 at 12:02 PM

I wonder why Florida gets a pass on this? I guess because it was in place before The Won got in office.

Cindy Munford on September 30, 2013 at 11:30 AM

This is the most telling part of the Obama/Holder voter fraud push.

In Florida, descrimination from pre-1965 was found in some of the counties, which left the state with a ‘split’ in the application of parts of the voting rights act. In the 50 years since then, the demographics of the state changed. Obama/Holder was unable to manipulate the justice department to fraudulently sue the parts of Florida where they collect most of their votes pre-emptively. This meant that sueing Florida would have allowed for the parts of Florida that vote AGAINST Obama to not use an ID while leaving Obama voters looking for an ID.

In other words, sueing Florida was not going to help Obamas political party so the politically biased justice department did not file a lawsuit.

Freddy on September 30, 2013 at 12:06 PM

So Big Socialist ‘Gubment’, led by the 1st Attorney General in U.S. history to be Censured (after Holder perpetrated 3 Felony Counts of Perjury before Congress and after the DOJ refused to press charges against their boss)…the Attorney General who stepped in after the 2012 Presidential election to drop criminal charges against a woman who bragged to the media that she had voted for Obama 5 -6 times…is stepping in to sue NC for passing a Voter ID law while declaring there is no voter fraud?!this administration has no shame…

easyt65 on September 30, 2013 at 12:11 PM

Why is he wasting his time on such small potatoes? Doesn’t he have some guns that need selling down South?

Oldnuke on September 30, 2013 at 1:06 PM

Holder and Obama are playing the long game right now. We’re thinking short game, once again.

How long will it take for this to wind it’s way up to the Supreme Court? Two years? More?

Any chance that Obama can get another Justice between now and then, to flip this in his favor?

Yeah.

Chris of Rights on September 30, 2013 at 1:46 PM

Mississippi City Elects Leader of Racist Black Supremacist Group ‘Republic of New Afrika’ As Its Mayor…

Resist We Much on September 30, 2013 at 1:44 PM

It won’t even take a year for that reprobate to loot and destroy that city. May it utterly destroy all who supported him.

Murphy9 on September 30, 2013 at 1:48 PM

Here’s some comedy for you. Here in NC, as evry high school stude knows, it has been the law for more than a decade that all persons over the age of 15 MUST carry valid ID upon their person when in public. Now, it’s somehow racist to require you to pull it out of your pocket and show it to vote.

PJ Emeritus on September 30, 2013 at 2:24 PM

Democrats = theTEATparty

Resist We Much on September 30, 2013 at 9:40 AM

Oh, I like that!

PersonFromPorlock on September 30, 2013 at 4:23 PM

What is this democrat administration afraid of? Maybe that they have been major obstructionists to voters?

MN J on September 30, 2013 at 4:42 PM

Why isn’t Holder just doing his job?

OmahaConservative on September 30, 2013 at 9:24 AM

The elimination of voter fraud is an existential threat to Democrat power. Holder is getting desperate.

There Goes the Neighborhood on October 1, 2013 at 12:06 AM