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In case you missed it, the North Carolina Center for Public Policy Research, a middle-of -the-road group known for conducting painstaking, in-depth research has issued a scathing analysis of the legislation pending in the state Senate to restrict voting.

Here is the special report the group emailed out last night:

Last Minute Changes to HB 589 Would Undermine Gains Made To N.C. Voter Turnout

Summary: Tonight, the N.C. Senate passed a Committee Substitute on 2nd reading for House Bill 589 that adds at least 7 new election law provisions to the bill, which originally was solely a voter photo ID bill.  The changes will reduce the number of days in the early voting period and end same-day voter registration.  The Center does not take a position on requiring a photo ID in order to vote because we have not done research on the issue.  However, the Center opposes the additional election law provisions because, as we found in our research in 1991 and 2003, early voting and same-day registration have worked to increase voter turnout and civic participation, because there is public support for these measures, and because the legislative process used to tack these provisions onto a moving bill is bad process and one we have criticized in additional reports over a 20-year period. Read More

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The Winston-Salem Journal has published an excellent column by good government advocate Bob Hall of Democracy North Carolina that is worth sharing far and wide in the coming days:

“Maybe you’re heard the rumor that you can’t vote if you have an outstanding traffic ticket. Or you must re-register to vote if you skip an election. Or your ballot will be rejected if you mark the straight-party option but don’t mark your choice for president first.

These claims are all false.

As an independent watchdog group, Democracy North Carolina tracks all sorts of misinformation. Voters should learn about the candidates, but it’s also valuable to know your basic voting rights so you won’t be intimidated or discouraged by the next rumor that seems a little scary.

Here’s a list of 20 tips that we’ve verified with the State Board of Elections:”

Read all 20 by clicking here.

 

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“Direct”…”defensive”…”authoritative”…and “scripted” are just some of the words being used to describe President Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney following the first presidential debate.

And while political pundits are talking about who won and who lost Wednesday’s war of words, don’t bother asking Gary Bartlett for his take.

The Executive Director for the N.C. State Board of Elections is spending every waking moment to make sure this year’s elections go smoothly. That means testing voting equipment, training precinct officials, processing an estimated 750,000 new voter registration applications, and getting early voting up and running by October 18th.

He anticipates voter turnout this presidential election year between 68% and 70%.

Gary Bartlett joins us this weekend on News & Views with Chris Fitzsimon to talk about the SBOE’s behind-the-scenes work, including investigating claims of dead people who are still registered to vote in North Carolina.

For a preview of Bartlett’s radio interview, click below:

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Good government guru Bob Hall at Democracy NC reports that early voting sites for all of North Carolina’s 100 counties are now posted on State Board of Elections site.

You can visit the Board at www.ncsbe.gov  or go directly to  http://www.ncsbe.gov/GetDocument.aspx?id=2562 to view the sites. You can also view them on a map by going to https://batchgeo.com/map/NCEarlyVoteSites.

Early voting (aka “one-stop absentee” voting) for the November 6 election starts October 18.