North Carolina: Now with Less Tar, More Heels
In his profile of U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, “Holder v. Roberts,” the New Yorker's Jeffrey Toobin makes a pass through North Carolina and lets us know what's happened there since they elected a Republican governor, Pat McCrory, in 2012, and the GOP expanded its hold on both houses:
At that point, the Republicans went on a legislative tear, ending benefits for the long-term unemployed, declining the expansion of Medicaid offered by the Affordable Care Act, and cutting taxes and government spending, especially for education.
Then in the wake of Shelby County v. Holder, which gutted the 1965 Voting Rights Act, the general assembly, led by Sen. Bob Rucho, passed House Bill 589, which Rick Hasen of the University of California at Irvine calls “the most sweeping anti-voter law in decades.” It includes:
- the elimination of same-day registration
- the elimination of a week of early voting
- the end of pre-registration for 16- and 17-year-olds
- the end of straight party ticket voting
- the repeal of public finance provisions for elections
- an increase in maximum campaign contributions
- a strict voter I.D. requirement that excludes student and public employee I.D.s
It was signed into law last August.
The state motto of North Carolina is Esse quam videri: to be rather than to seem. So true. They no longer seem racist.