NC Supreme Court sends voter ID, tax cap amendments back to lower court

The North Carolina Supreme Court signaled that voter ID and tax cap amendments ratified by a majority of the state’s voters may be invalid because the legislature that put them on the ballot was racially gerrymandered, according to The Daily Wire.

The state’s high court ruled 4–3 along party lines to send the lawsuit back to a lower court on Friday so it could be studied further, leaving the amendments’ validity in doubt.

The court noted in its Friday ruling that majorities in the state legislature that voted to put forth the amendments in question in 2018 came from districts that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled were illegally racially gerrymandered.

Legislative maps were redrawn for the 2018 election, and Republican supermajorities in the state were broken that year after 30 districts were found to be gerrymandered and 100 of the state’s 170 districts were altered.

Subverting the will of voters

“We conclude that … the North Carolina Constitution impose[s] limits on these legislators’ authority to initiate the process of amending the constitution under these circumstances,” Justice Anita Earls wrote in the majority Democrat opinion.

The ruling did stop short of supporting the lower court’s invalidation of the amendments, saying that was too broad.

North Carolina House of Representatives Speaker Tim Moore (R), called the decision a “judicial coup” and said Republicans would keep fighting for the amendments.

“This party-line ruling is in direct contradiction to the rule of law and the will of the voters,” Moore said in a statement. “I will continue to fight for the Voter ID and Tax Cap Amendments, which were overwhelmingly approved by the people of North Carolina. It’s time to end the judicial coup that is unilaterally altering our constitution and subverting the will of North Carolina voters.”

Voters support voter ID

In particular, voter ID laws have been popular with voters nationwide. It just makes sense that when you have to show ID to buy alcohol, fly on an airplane, and do any number of other things in the U.S., you should also be more than able to take the step of proving your identity in order to vote.

Voter ID laws are the best way to prevent voter fraud, and Democrats’ strong opposition to those laws does not inspire confidence that they are acting fairly with regard to elections in this country.

It would seem that when a majority of voters supported these amendments, it would be contrary to their will to strike them down.

However, the constitutional process must be followed, so it may be back to the drawing board in the end.

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