North Carolina Supreme Court makes major announcement on voter ID law

The North Carolina Supreme Court has voted to hear oral arguments in a lawsuit challenging the state’s photo voter ID law.

The 4-3 decision approved oral arguments in the case to take place in October.

The situation

“In light of the great public interest in the subject matter of this case, the importance of the issues to the constitutional jurisprudence of this State, and the need to reach a final resolution on the merits at the earliest possible opportunity,” Justice Robin Hudson, a Democrat, wrote in the order.

“[T]his case shall be scheduled for oral argument as soon as practicable, on a date to be determined during arguments scheduled the week of 3 October 2022, or by special setting no later than 18 October 2022,” Hudson added.

The background

“The 8-1 decision does not end the three-year-plus dispute over the voter ID law, which is not in effect and has been challenged in state and federal courts,” the Associated Press wrote in July.

“The Supreme Court’s ruling just means that the legislative leaders can intervene in the federal case to defend the law. A lower court had ruled the lawmakers’ interests were being adequately represented by the state’s attorney general, Democrat Josh Stein,” it added.

Adding oral arguments in October adds to an already turbulent time just weeks ahead of November’s midterm elections.

The case will likely be closely watched by other states where Democrats have also pushed back against vote ID laws they claim discriminate against some voters.

For now, the case appears to continue moving forward in a way that will continue to fuel concerns among both sides as the nation seeks to improve after controversies in the 2020 election.