Note: This is the first in a series of Director’s Blog posts on the fraud-friendly provisions inserted into NC election law during last week’s no-look passage of HB 836, the bill that laid out terms of surrender to the opponents of voter ID in North Carolina. There will several posts like this and we will try to post one a day until the law is corrected.
June 23, 2015 (RALEIGH) — “That’s not what we were told,” bellowed one angry lawmaker, Monday, as we walked through the painful details of the surrender pact the GOP caucus was forced to sign by their panicked leadership.
“We were assured the county election boards will verify those ballots just like they do an absentee ballot,” he said, speaking about the Reasonable Impediment Determination (RID) that will allow anybody to vote without a photo ID simply by providing an excuse and an official looking piece of paper with the voter’s name and address on it.
Feeding on the herd mentality of the GOP caucus, their leadership sold the reform as, “the only way we can win the lawsuit.” They went on to warn, “otherwise, the courts may throw the entire law out.” Frightened lawmakers all caved to that ruse and jumped off the cliff together.
Meanwhile, the GOP establishment went into full damage control mode in response to our objections. Last night, I spoke to a GOP-leaning activist group and this is what an angry former Republican said she received in a spam from the Wake GOP:
“These changes strengthen, not dilute, our great voter ID law. By making allowances (with strict rules) for dealing with legitimate problems (situations), our General Assembly has made the law more likely to survive potential lawsuits AND helped ensure all eligible voters are allowed to vote.” VIP response: “Don’t insult the intelligence of your party’s grassroots.”
There is nothing “strict” in HB 836 that we could find and we had several VIP leaders and analysts take a great deal of effort to review this train wreck.
Dear Legislator, could you please define the word, “valid”?
Now, it’s up to VIP voices to be heard in their offices and email accounts, suggesting corrections to HB 836 that will restore fraud-prevention into the voter ID law.
The fact is, all 101 NC Boards of Elections (also known as “two wolves and a sheep”) will each make up their own definition of the word, “verify,” as used in § 163-182.1B(a), which is part of the bill that gutted NC’s voter ID law (click here to view).
The nature of provisional balloting is that “verify” will mean to make sure the form is properly filled out.
Unless lawmakers legislate a verification process that discourages enterprise level voter fraud, we’re stuck with California-style chaos on Election Day right here in North Carolina. We’ve seen how that movie ends and don’t really want to pay the price of admission.
Here are is proposed solution to “Reason One”
Require the voter to turn over their HAVA ID long enough for the BOE to obtain a copy and to mail it back to the voter (at no cost to the voter) within 24 hours. Additionally, the BOE would have certain statutory duties to perform in order to authenticate the document and to verify the voter is currently living at the address on the document. For example, there is no reference in current law about the shelf life of the HAVA ID document, so a utility bill from five years ago could still be used as a voter ID. The intent of HB 589 was to prevent this sort of easy fraud.
If nothing else, our proposed solution will discourage one type of organized effort to steal, oh perhaps, a thousand votes, for a statewide election. If a race is close enough, and if it’s significant enough, some highly funded Soros- or ACORN-type criminal enterprises have been known to shift resources to win. The media term for it is “walk-around money,” but let’s be frank: It’s money campaigns allocate to buy extra votes. We’ve seen it over and over, but it’s impossible to prove without film ans such. Our proposed solution wouldn’t end all vote fraud, but it would help discourage this particular form of election fraud.