North Carolina’s voter ID law had racially discriminatory intent, state Supreme Court says


The North Carolina Supreme Court on Friday upheld a lower court ruling that nullified the state’s 2018 voter ID law, agreeing with the lower court that it had been passed with intent to target black voters who are unlikely to be Republicans would be right.

“We believe that the three-judge panel’s findings of fact are supported by competent evidence showing that the law was motivated by a racially discriminatory purpose,” the court said by a Democratic majority, adding that the lower court also correctly applied the relevant precedent.

The three Republican members of the state Supreme Court disagreed with the ruling on Friday.

Known as SB 824, the law was passed in 2018 after Republicans lost their majority in the Legislature but before the new Legislature took over. The law was stayed under an injunction after the North Carolina Court of Appeals ruled in 2020 that voter identification provisions could negatively impact Black voters. A three-judge state court panel then permanently blocked the law in September 2021.

Republicans are set to regain control of North Carolina’s Supreme Court in the coming weeks after the party swapped two seats on the court in last month’s midterm elections.

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