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North Carolina’s latest photo voter identification struck down as racially biased by state judges

A 2018 lawsuit contended the law was discriminatory and would disproportionately harm Black voters who lacked easy access to IDs.
Credit: tinyakov - stock.adobe.com

RALEIGH, N.C. — North Carolina’s latest photo voter identification was struck down as racially biased by state judges Friday.

Two of the three trial judges hearing a lawsuit declared on Friday that the December 2018 law is unconstitutional. The judges barred its enforcement, agreeing with minority voters that Republicans rammed through rules tainted by racial bias as a way to remain in power. 

The majority's decision is now likely headed to a state appeals court.

With two other pending lawsuits, it's looking more unlikely that a voter ID mandate for in-person and absentee balloting will happen in the 2022 elections. 

A previous ID law was struck down five years ago.

Opponents of the law contend the law was discriminatory and would disproportionately harm Black voters who lacked easy access to IDs.

RELATED: NC Voter ID trial ends with no immediate ruling

GOP lawmakers say the law's requirements benefit more voters than a 2013 voter ID law that was struck down by federal courts. 

The law was never fully implemented because of ongoing legal challenges.

RELATED: September is National Voter Registration Month. Here's how to register to vote in the Carolinas

September is National Voter Registration Month. 

Federal law requires all voters casting a ballot to be aged 18 and a U.S. citizen. Both North Carolina and South Carolina require those registering to vote to be state residents and live in the county and precinct in which they live.

The Associated Press contributed to this report