North Carolina So Sad Supreme Court Won't Let It Reinstate Racist Voting Policies Just A Little
Offer void where brown
The Supreme Court Wednesday turned down North Carolina's request to pretty please let it at least suppress some voting in time for this fall's election, because the state worries too many of the wrong people might show up and vote against the people who passed the voting restrictions in the first place. How is that even fair? The Court did not issue any explanation for denying the state's petition to stay enforcement of a July 29 decision tossing out voting restrictions that the Fourth District Court of Appeals said were designed to "target African-Americans with almost surgical precision."
The state had asked the Supremes to just let it reinstate three of its itty-bitty voter suppression measures -- a strict voter ID requirement restricting the kinds of acceptable photo ID, elimination of some early voting, and allowing registration of 17-year-olds who'd turn 18 by Election Day -- because failure to keep them in place would cause "confusion" among voters. Yes, they really argued voters might stay home if voting remained easy, because they'd so been looking forward to being excluded from voting, but the prospect of being able to vote would simply make their poor brains shut down.
Also laughable: Although North Carolina presented the request for the stay as an "emergency" request, the state waited 17 days after the appeals court ruling to file.
The breakdown among the justices was about exactly what you'd expect: Justices Kagan, Sotomayor, Breyer, and Ginsburg nixed the petition altogether. On the voter ID and early voting elimination, John Roberts, Anthony Kennedy and Samuel Alito would have approved the request, while Clarence Thomas would have agreed to all three restrictions (and probably wanted to suggest some additional ones they could try).
With the resulting 4-4 tie, the lower court ruling holds, and North Carolina will just have to find a way to deal with all those unwashed confused people who want to vote. We believe in you, North Carolina. You can probably manage this, especially since it's simply a matter of going back to how things were before you passed your terrible law in 2013.