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Opinion Letters Voter ID will disenfranchise minority voters

There he goes again. I mean, of course, Sen. James Davis, with his proclivity for bogus and unsubstantiated "facts." He tells us most recently, in a meeting with county commissioners, that a proposed Republican- sponsored voter ID law is supported by 70 percent of the state's citizens and should be the legislature's top priority. How does he know it's 70 percent? ESP, I suppose, since he offers no verifiable statistics from a surveyor poll. Curiously, he remains mum on the fact that voter fraud is now virtually non-existent in the United States, (ref. Jane Mayer, "The Voter Fraud Myth," The New Yorker, Oct. 29, 2012). He is also silent on the fact that the proposed Republican voter ID and proof of citizenship requirements will disenfranchise thousands of previously valid voters in North Carolina who typically vote — you guessed it — Democratic: Minorities, women, the elderly. The proposed law would also place restrictions on absentee balloting and early voting.

Nineteen states, all controlled by Republican governors and legislatures, have now passed such restrictive voter "reform" laws. Should we believe there are no ulterior motives? Take, for example, Mike Turzai, the Republican leader of the House of Representatives in Pennsylvania, who revealed what lies behind such laws when his state passed such a measure. He boasted in a rare moment of candor, "the voter ID law is going to allow Gov. Romney to win the state of Pennslyvania." It was a prediction that was not fulfilled but that does not mean that such laws are not pernicious.

We all know that all three branches of government in North Carolina are now controlled by Republican lawmakers and so the draconian voter ID law will, of course, be passed. Because of the Repubublican "lock" in Raleigh on lawmaking we can also look for other unreasonable laws in the future. Why are Republicans in Raleigh doing this? Because they can. And Sen. Davis will be in the forefront, assuring us such "reforms" are necessary and justified because, after all, the majority of us support them.

R. Michael Jones — Sylva, N.C.


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