On Monday, the United State Supreme Court denied the petition for a writ of certiorari in North Carolina, et al. v. North Carolina Conference of the NAACP. This case centered on the North Carolina Voter ID law passed in 2013.
This legislation sought to ensure integrity at the ballot box for North Carolinians by among other things requiring “voters to present an approved form of photo identification before casting a ballot.” The concept of Voter ID is supported 75% of North Carolinians – regardless of political party.
After a lengthy journey through the judicial system, the law’s future ended up at the US Supreme Court.
However, in January 2017, newly-elected Attorney General Josh Stein sought to dismiss the petition. Under North Carolina law, “the state Attorney General to dismiss the petition on behalf of the State and instead expressly permits the Assembly to retain private counsel…”
It is worth noting that Attorney General Josh Stein’s father Adam Stein represented the NC NAACP in this case and he personally contributed $500,000 to assist with the election of his son. Another questionable action is AG Josh Stein testifying against the law in court after launching his campaign for attorney general. His testimony made exaggerated claims so that he could post on his website to raise campaign dollars.
The questionable actions by Attorney General Josh Stein created significant uncertainty in the case and this intentional confusion created by Stein is cited as the reason the US Supreme Court did not move forward in hearing the case.
“Given the blizzard of filings over who is and who is not authorized to seek review in this Court under North Carolina law, it is important to recall our frequent admonition that ‘t[he denial of a writ of certiorari imports no expression of opinion upon the merits of the case.”
Rep. David Lewis said the following after the denial:
“Once again, the left has muddied the waters and confused North Carolina voters who support voting with a photo ID by continued litigation and procedural manuvers—this time at the United States Supreme Court. I am disappointed the Supreme Court has decided not to rule on the merits of the common-sense Voter ID law that North Carolina passed several years ago. I will continue to fight for the gold standard in voting-that anyone who wants to vote and who is eligible to vote can vote once, and that those votes cumulatively determine the outcome of our elections.”