“Data Highlight: New Voting Law, Little Information, Less Confidence
Volunteers with Democracy North Carolina and other groups conducted a large Exit Survey at the polls in 34 counties during the May primary. An analysis of the 7,000 surveys seems to undermine NC House Speaker Thom Tillis’ justification for passing the Monster Law; he said it was needed to “restore confidence” in elections, but it’s causing just the opposite reaction.
Dr. Martha Kropf, professor of political science at UNC-Charlotte, designed the questions, analyzed the data and produced a report. She is also president of the NC Political Science Association this year. Her report is pretty technical; here are some of the key findings, with rounded numbers:
** 76% of the voters surveyed said the information they were given at the polls about the photo ID was “clear and understandable,” but 46% could not tell us “what is the first election when voters will be required to show an acceptable photo ID at the polls.” This indicates to us that the information they received was simplistic and essentially useless.
** 19% or nearly 1 in 5 said they were not even asked about having an acceptable ID, a chief purpose of the roll-out education.
** The changes to the election law are not making most people feel more confident about the election process; and there are strong differences between how African-American and white voters view the changes.
** 44% of whites versus 20% of African Americans said the changes made them feel “more confident” in the security of the election process; it was just the opposite for who felt “less confident.”
** 44% of whites versus 16% of African Americans said the changes made them “more confident” in the fairness of the election process; by contrast, 54% of African Americans versus 35% of whites felt “less confident” in the fairness of elections because of the changes.
** Bottom line: Regardless of race, a majority of the respondents do not feel the changes make them “more confident” in the security or fairness of elections. And the information they received from officials about the photo ID requirement was basically useless and varied widely from precinct to precinct.”