By Outer Banks Voice on September 15, 2020
In an unusual election year in which some voters may already be confused about how to cast ballots, a Sept. 15 North Carolina Court of Appeals Court ruling to reinstate a voter ID requirement does not mean voters will need to show ID to vote in 2020.
“This case will have no impact on a separate court ruling that has barred the photo ID law from taking effect in the 2020 election,” stated North Carolina State Board of Elections spokesperson Patrick Gannon, in an email to the Voice. “Photo ID will not be required in this election.”
The voter ID law has had a bumpy recent history in North Carolina and in a 2018 referendum, voters approved a constitutional amendment requiring a photo ID to vote in person by a margin of 55.5% to 44.5%. A few months later, in Feb. 2019, a Wake County Superior Court Judge ruled in favor of NAACP plaintiffs and invalidated that referendum result.
With its 2-1 decision on Sept. 15, the Court of Appeals re-established the voter ID requirement and another ballot measure capping state income taxes at 7% that was approved by voters in 2018 and later overturned. But as Gannon noted and media accounts reported, because there is still other litigation over the voter ID requirement, it will not go into effect for an election that is now less than two months away.
The NAACP also issued a statement saying it will appeal today’s ruling to the N.C. Supreme Court.