With midterm elections coming up soon, the fight over Voter ID laws, which Republicans generally contend are common-sense measures that will help stop or prevent voter fraud and the left claims are “racist”, is more important than ever.
That’s particularly true in North Carolina, where the fight over Voter ID laws isn’t just about the laws themselves, but about whether the right-leaning legislature can step in to defend the laws from the lawsuits of the NAACP and other leftist organizations when the bureaucrat in charge of defending the laws is a Democrat who, because of his outlook on the laws, is perceived as acting in an insouciant manner when defending the law and dealing with the lawsuit.
The fight over that is important because it will determine another boundary line in state power; will the state legislatures, predicted to drift even more to the right with a 2022 red wave, have the power and thus be able to intervene more in 2024 if things look fishy, or will the state bureaucrats, many more of whom are leftists, have the power?
In North Carolina the case is particularly important because, though the state has a Voter ID law, it is under attack and the attackers are winning, with a Wake County panel ruling 2-1 that the law was unconstitutional under the state’s constitution because it was adopted with a discriminatory purpose, saying:
“we do not find that any member of the General Assembly who voted in favor of S.B. 824 harbors any racial animus or hatred towards African American voters, but rather … that the Republican majority targeted voters who, based on race, were unlikely to vote for the majority party. Even if done for partisan ends, that constitutes racial discrimination.”
And thus the panel would get rid of it, something that those who support Voter ID laws want to stop.
At the time of that ruling it was North Carolina House Speaker Tim Moore who stood up to the court and criticized it, saying:
“Once again, liberal judges have defied the will of North Carolinians on election integrity. Voters of this state have repeatedly supported a voter ID requirement – going so far as to enshrine it in our state constitution. Senate Bill 824 is one of the most generous in the country, and it was modeled on those of other states.”
And now the legislature wants to get involved to help defend the law, and the Supreme Court has picked up the case to determine the permissibility of legislators getting involved.
PBS, reporting on that decision, notes that the justices intend on resolving the issue and wading into the fight between courts, legislatures, and bureaucrats, saying:
The issue has arisen repeatedly in cases from North Carolina and Pennsylvania, where Democratic majorities on the states’ highest courts have invoked voting protections in their state constitutions to frustrate the plans of Republican-dominated legislatures.
Already, four conservative Supreme Court justices have noted their interest in deciding whether state courts, finding violations of their state constitutions, can order changes to federal elections and the once-a-decade redrawing of congressional districts. The Supreme Court has never invoked what is known as the independent state legislature doctrine, although three justices advanced it in the Bush v. Gore case that settled the 2000 presidential election.
“The issue is almost certain to keep arising until the Court definitively resolves it,” Justice Brett Kavanaugh wrote in March.
So now the court intends on resolving it, though which way the court will rule is unclear.