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New report shows huge drop in voter registration of poor NC residents

Voter IDA new analysis of voter registration data shows that under the McCrory administration, North Carolina may be systematically failing to provide state residents with the opportunity to register to vote when they apply for public assistance — such as food stamps or welfare — in violation of the National Voter Registration Act.

Commonly called the “Motor Voter Law,” the Act requires public assistance agencies and motor vehicle offices to provide voter registration services whenever someone applies for benefits, renews or recertifies benefits, or changes an address with the agency, unless the person declines these services in writing.

Affected programs include the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (“SNAP”), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (“TANF”), the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (“WIC”), the Medicaid program, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (“CHIP”).

According to Democracy NC, voter registration applications initiated at public assistance agencies have dropped dramatically since McCrory took office. They fell from an annual average of 38,400 between 2007 and 2012 to an average of only 16,000 in the past two years, a decline of more than 50 percent.

The organization also reports that last fall it and other voting-rights groups checked out 19 public assistance agencies across the state  and found after interviews that up to 75 percent of the clients at the agencies did not see a registration question on agency forms and were not asked whether they would like to register to vote, as required by federal law.

Also, according to this piece in the The Daily Kos:

From 1995 through 2012, the North Carolina State Board of Elections (SBOE) published on its web site annual summaries (in the form of Excel spreadsheets) of its NVRA compliance data. But, beginning in 2013 (when McCrory took office), that practice appears to have come to a halt, and no annual summaries are available there for McCrory’s term (2013-2014).

Here’s a graph from that article showing the apparent decline:

(Source: DocDawg for Daily Kos)

(Source: DocDawg for Daily Kos)

Democracy NC, Action NC, and the A. Philip Randolph Institute sent a notice letter today to the State Board of Elections  and the Department of Health and Human Services, advising both of their findings and giving the state 90 days to comply with the law or face yet another voting rights lawsuit.

North Carolina is already in the throes voting rights battles in the courts. Three federal lawsuits — including one brought by the Justice Department — and another action in state court, all concerning the state’s so called “Monster Voting Law,” are now pending.

The state is also fighting a challenge to its 2011 voter redistricting plan, a case that is now back in state Supreme Court after being remanded by the U.S. Supreme Court.

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14 Comments


  1. LayintheSmakDown

    May 8, 2015 at 10:51 am

    This is just silly. You have many opportunities to register, including around election time when you have people trolling the ghetto wal-marts to increase the “poor” vote in “diverse” communities. Heck, when I was unemployed and went to the UESC to sign up for benefits there was an opportunity to register to vote there. It is not the lack of available opportunity, it is the lack of a “diverse” candidate at the moment and the fact that we are not really near an election cycle so there is little interest at the moment.

  2. Gene Hoglan

    May 8, 2015 at 6:55 pm

    3/10 for creative dogwhistling, 7/10 for the stuff_that_didnt_happen.txt anecdote, and 2/10 for taking such obvious bait.

  3. Alan

    May 8, 2015 at 7:29 pm

    Closet racism at it’s best. Keep up the good work LSD, you’re doing your party proud.

    PS. This is your cue to act all outraged and indignant, putting up a front that there was no racist dog-whistle in your post, and of course the comical response that there’s absolutely no racism in the GOP.

  4. LayintheSmakDown

    May 9, 2015 at 1:08 pm

    Which anecdote didn’t happen. Even Alan can tell you I was unemployed late last year and early this year. And back in 08 I went to the ghetto Walmart near where I worked and there were progressives trolling the lot to register poor folks.

  5. Alan

    May 9, 2015 at 1:52 pm

    Actually, LSD, I have no idea if you were unemployed or not. Also, are you at the stage where even you don’t realize your own dog-whistle racism, even after it’s pointed out to you? Would that have been a white ghetto Walmart, or a “poor” and “diverse” ghetto Walmart?

  6. LayintheSmakDown

    May 10, 2015 at 9:32 am

    Stop lying Alan. You specifically referenced it a few weeks ago when you called me “unemployable”. You had also referenced it at other times, but that was the most recent. But I guess if the facts get in the way of your personal narrative. And the remainder of your post makes no sense. “would that you have been at a wal-mart”, are you a product of government schools?

  7. Alan

    May 10, 2015 at 10:20 am

    Like I said, I have no idea if you were unemployed or not, you post so much crazy talk here it’s hard to know if anything you say is valid, or not. Please read my post again, it appears you are confused. I have no idea where YOUR quote came from, it read “Would that have been a white ghetto Walmart, or a “poor” and “diverse” ghetto Walmart?”. Please pay attention to the details.

    And to answer you specific question, yes, I am a product of “guv’mint” schools. That’s why I understand the scientific facts of global climate change, the scientific facts of evolution, etc., etc., etc.

    You, on the other hand, sound like a product of the home skoolurz, correct? Just how old is planet earth LSD?

  8. LayintheSmakDown

    May 11, 2015 at 5:38 pm

    Actually I did attend government schools in the Charlotte area, so yes I can read facts and interpret them. I do have trouble with your crazy writing that makes no sense. And yes, it was all of the above, poor in the ghetto walmart with diverse clientele.

    By the way care to explain dog whistle racism? I am having a hard time hearing that.
    ….
    I also enjoy your selective memory, but I guess you were working on your crazy tin foil hat, or you random phrase generator when insulting me the other week.

  9. Alan

    May 11, 2015 at 9:41 pm

    Actually LSD… you manage to insult yourself most of the time with your crazy, reflexisive urgency to post on just about every topic. You don’t need me, or anyone else to embarass yourself, you do a fine job all on your own. I honestly don’t expect you to comprehend much, that much is evident by your daily crazy talk posted here on this forum for all to see.

    You didn’t answer the question about planet earth LSD, are you scared that all the smart(er) folks will simply laugh at you? So, how many years were you a home skooler?

  10. LayintheSmakDown

    May 13, 2015 at 5:59 pm

    4.5 billion years or so….and your point? Are you going to go on some tangent that dinosaurs did not exist or some more of your usual crazy rantings?

  11. Alan

    May 13, 2015 at 6:43 pm

    Actually, I have never stated dinosaurs did not exist, I do believe it’s your team that makes those sort of crazy comments. You left out the bit about how long you were a home skooler…

  12. LayintheSmakDown

    May 14, 2015 at 11:43 am

    I don’t have a team that makes those kind of comments, I think you don’t know your teams.

    Sorry, with your illeterate, or is it ebonics, spelling I was having trouble there. I went to the government schools somewhere in Stanly County, NC in the 1980’s. My mother was a teacher in the schools there if that counts as home “skool”. By the way…you spell it “school”, I know it gets confusing when you see it spelled “Playskool” on your toys in that padded room that Chris and Rob keep you in.

  13. Alan

    May 16, 2015 at 10:49 pm

    Oh, I know my teams all right, and I know the one that’s totally nuts, and it’s the GOP.

  14. LayintheSmakDown

    May 17, 2015 at 5:35 pm

    Heard of reflection? That comment was it!

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