Courts Rejected Prior Moves to Suppress the Vote in NC
Republican lawmakers in North Carolina did everything they could to prevent citizens from lawfully exercising their right to vote. They enacted racially-charged voter suppression legislation that was so malicious and insidious that the courts called it "the most restrictive voting law in North Carolina since the era of Jim Crow."
Even after being lambasted by the court for "targeting African Americans with almost surgical precision" and having their so-called "monster" voter suppression effort rejected, Republicans still did everything within their power to limit the right of African Americans to vote. Rather than lick their wounds and run a fair election, they doubled down instead, urging local election officials to act along pure party lines, including by limiting early voting hours and closing polls on Sundays.
Even after the election, still not content with letting the citizens of North Carolina speak, outgoing Governor McCrory and his party claimed that the election was rigged. And lest you be tempted to think that maybe they were right, remember that this is an election that THEY controlled.
Sure enough, despite lengthy, combative and costly efforts, even the Republican-controlled Election Boards were unable to find any evidence of voter fraud.
So let's recap. North Carolina's Republicans, charged with running a government of the people, by the people, and for the people:
- Tried to disenfranchise millions of voters, for no reasons other than the color of their skin and their tendency to vote Democratic
- Even after being admonished by the courts, brazenly tried to continue their voter suppression efforts
- When they lost the Governor's race despite all those efforts, they fought the results based only on false claims that the election that they oversaw was tainted
Think about that for a minute. These so-called representatives of the people weren't even the slightest bit concerned with running a fair election. They didn't care about whether their constituents had an opportunity to exercise a long-established Constitutional right. They just wanted to reinforce their power play and prevent certain segments of the population from voting.
Sadly, this wasn't the bitter end to this ridiculousness.
In what was supposed to be a session to consider disaster relief aid for the citizens of North Carolina, the Republican-controlled legislature instead is taking up a number of initiatives designed to reduce the power of the Governor's office as well as drastically change the way the judicial system works, all in the name of benefiting their own party. Among their initiatives:
- Limit important political appointments by the Governor
- Drastically reduce the number of positions that work directly for the Governor
- Change the operational system for the state's Boards of Elections
- Initiate partisan elections for the state Supreme Court
- Add more levels of review to judicial appeals to ensure that the full Republican-controlled appeals court has an opportunity to review all cases at a certain level
And this is just a partial list!
North Carolina's duly chosen Governor-elect, Roy Cooper, has said that he will go to the courts if needed to challenge these reprehensible measures.
Tonight these so-called representatives of the electorate are advancing this legislation, at times behind closed doors.
It's one thing to earn the confidence of voters by improving conditions for people to such a degree that you can win election after election. It's another thing entirely to circumvent the democratic process in order to maintain power despite the will of the people. That's a system that's sure to come toppling down eventually.
Pigs get fat. Hogs get slaughtered.
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