National Broadcaster Reacts to NC Voter ID

NEW YORK –If you listen to WCHL in the afternoon, you’re likely to hear national radio talk show host Ed Schultz, and if you listened on Tuesday, Schultz once again took time to focus on North Carolina—this time, the state’s new voter I.D. law.

Governor Pat McCrory signed the bill into law on Monday which, among other things, requires voters to show a government-issued photo I.D. before voting. Schultz points out that this is the first bill dealing with voting signed into law since the Supreme Court struck down part of the Voting Rights Act.

“North Carolina has been the first state to step forward and do something which I consider to be very radical, on new voting restrictions,” Schultz says.

Schultz was joined by Bob Shrum, a Democratic strategist and a senior fellow at New York University’s Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. Schrum says that North Carolina’s voting reform was passed to limit the voting of individuals who are less likely to support Republicans in elections.

“They are losing the battle for the future demographics of America. They’re losing young people, they’re losing minorities,” Shrum says. “They’re going to try to hold this off for a while, hold off the demographic wave, by keeping people from voting.”

Schultz and Shrum both particularly focused on a part of North Carolina’s new voting law that prevents 17-year-olds who would be 18 by Election Day from preregistering, which Shrum says is unconstitutional.

“They don’t want young people to vote because the Republican Party has lost young people. It’s lost young people because of its position on social issues. It’s lost young people because of its position on student loans and economic fairness,” Shrum says. “You just go down the list.”

Before the Supreme Court’s decision in June, North Carolina would have needed federal approval before it implemented changes to voting such as these.

The Justice Department still has the authority to sue states if it believes those states are passing discriminatory voting policies, and on Tuesday, U.S. Senator Kay Hagan sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder asking him to sue to prevent North Carolina’s voting law from taking effect.

Moral Monday, WCHL Get National Attention

CHAPEL HILL – Moral Monday protests that continue to bring attention to new bills, received national attention on the Ed Schultz show Monday afternoon.  Schultz says that several of his colleagues have been “Frothing at the Mouth” over Moral Mondays.

“Moral Monday, there are going to be some more people who are going to be arrested today down in North Carolina, and why would you want to take away the hopes and dreams of a young person or someone that would be actively involved?” said Schultz.

North Carolina Senate Democratic leader, Martin Nesbitt, joined Schultz on the show and discussed the current law that the General Assembly passed regarding voter IDs.

“Cut back a week of early voting, eliminate straight ticket voting, counties can’t extend the poll hours on Election Day in response to long lines, eliminate pre-registration for 16- and 17-year-olds, bans voter registration drives, by the calculation of the people who know we think the changes will about 416,000 hours to North Carolina’s voting process” Nesbitt commented.

The new Voter ID bill is just one of many bills that have passed.  Many people like Ed Schultz, Martin Nesbitt, and Moral Monday protesters say they disagree with the laws. Nesbitt says passing unpopular bills could hurt a party’s chance for re-election.

“And the legislature rating is down around 20 percent right now, the margin on a generic ballot for the legislature is nine points to the democrats, the highest it has ever been since public policy polling asked the question” Nesbitt said.

Nesbitt references that Carter Wrenn said the Republicans shouldn’t think they won’t lose it as quick as they won elections while on WCHL’s show, Who’s Talking with DG Martin.  Republicans in office have been under fire from many different groups like the Moral Monday protesters, Democrats in office, and the media.  Nesbitt says Republicans have been hard to find toward the end of session.

“They’re, they about gone silent now, they use to get on and brag and do this sort of thing, and now they just kind of gone silent and they continue to do what they had to do and pursue this agenda, and once again I think the plan is just lay low and express the vote and hope nobody comes get us” Nesbitt remarked.

Governor Pat McCrory will have many bills to either veto or pass in the near future.