‘We plan to be there in numbers…’
(Lionel Parrott, Liberty Headlines) The North Carolina chapter of the NAACP has words of warning for legislators returning to fill in the details on a voter ID amendment to the state constitution, according to WRAL News.
They say they’ll protest the law if they feel it’s too restrictive.
“We plan to be there in numbers,” said the NAACP’s state president, T. Anthony Spearman, when asked about possible civil disobedience at the legislature that could lead to arrests. “We’ll take our lead from the General Assembly.”
When it comes to voter ID, this won’t be the North Carolina legislature’s first rodeo. They passed a strict voter ID law back in 2013, but it never went into effect for any general election. Instead, it was struck down by a federal court after they found it to be racially discriminatory.
Undeterred, the legislature put a voter ID amendment on the ballot this year, hoping voters would add it to the state’s constitution and make it safer from federal challenges.
The people of North Carolina happily complied, ratifying the amendment with about 56 percent of the vote.
Critics of the amendment said voters were being asked to pass an amendment without knowing the full details.
That criticism had some merit, though legislative leaders assured voters that any voter ID law would be at least as accommodating as the 2013 law struck down by the courts.
Now it’s up to the General Assembly to pass “enabling legislation” that will allow the voter ID amendment to be enforced.
And if the state’s NAACP doesn’t like it, legislators can expect a spectacle from an organization that in North Carolina has come to be known for over-the-top protests—and rhetoric to accompany it.
Spearman warned lawmakers not to take any actions that would affect the rights of black voters provided after the Civil War, which he referred to as a “stimulus package” for freed slaves.
“If you think we’re going to cower down passively and allow you to rob us of any portion of our stimulus package, then you’ve got another thing coming,” he said.
Legislators will convene for session Nov. 26.