NEW VOTING LAW IN NORTH CAROLINA
SYMBOLIC OF THE “OLD SOUTH”
Statement By Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr.
August 13, 2013
Yesterday Republican Governor Pat McCrory of North Carolina signed into law a Republican-backed new voter law that eliminated same-day voter registration and voting; eliminated pre-registration by young voters; reduced early voting days from 17 to 10 - 2.5 million votes were cast through early voting in 2012, including about three-fourths of African American votes; eliminated extending voting hours to accommodate long lines; and requires voters to present stricter photo identification at the polls that many voters, especially minorities, don’t have.
It’s a new form of the old poll tax. It’s the latest effort by Republicans at voter suppression. It’s the same old strategy and has the same old goal that the old Democratic post-Civil War “Redeemers” had – to turn back the clock and disenfranchise voters only now Republicans are implementing it.
All of this is being done in the name of combating “voter fraud.” Yet all of the evidence indicates that voter fraud through impersonation of another at the voting booth is virtually non-existent. North Carolina is “fixing a problem” that doesn't exist.
Why are such efforts and laws possible? They are possible because Americans don’t have an “individual right to vote” in their Constitution. We have a “states’ rights” voting system with 50 state (plus DC), 3,143 counties and 13,000 “separate and unequal” election jurisdictions nation-wide. We have the ironic situation that after the Heller decision, the SCOTUS said we have an individual citizenship right to a gun, but in Bush v. Gore the SCOTUS said we don’t have an individual citizenship right to vote. We need an “individual right to vote” amendment (H.J. Res. 44) added to our Constitution to prevent these state’s rights efforts at voter suppression.
Keep Hope Alive!
Rainbow PUSH Coalition is a multi -racial, multi-issue, progressive, international organization that was formed in December 1996 by the Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. through merging of two organizations he founded Operation PUSH People United to Serve Humanity (estab. 1971) and the Rainbow Coalition (estab. 1984). With headquarters in Chicago and offices in Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, New York and Oakland, the organization works to make the American Dream a reality for all citizens while advocating for peace and justice around the world. RPC is dedicated to improving the lives of all people by serving as a voice for the voiceless. Its mission is to protect, defend and gain civil rights by leveling the economic and educational playing fields while promoting peace and justice around the world.