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North Carolina Voter ID Law Overturned

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Voting polls Credit: Thinkstock

A U.S. appeals court in North  Carolina overturned that state’s law that included a rule that required voters to show ID when they got to the polls.

A panel of three  judges with the Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found that provisions with in the law were enacted with “discriminatory intent,” saying that provisions within the law violated the Voting Rights Act as well as the 14th, 15th and 26th Amendments.

“In North Carolina, restriction of voting mechanisms and procedures that most heavily affect African Americans will predictably redound to the benefit of one political party and to the disadvantage of the other. As the evidence in the record makes clear, that is what happened here,” the ruling states.

Going forward, North Carolina is prohibited from asking any voter to show ID in elections, including the November 2016 general election. The state will also put a week of early voting back in place, and pre-registration for people aged 16 and 17 years and solidifies same-day registration and out-of-precinct voting, the Raleigh News & Observer reported.

The law was originally sponsored in the state’s Republican-controlled General Assembly in 2013, and then-Governor Pat McCrory. Many who supported the law have said requiring ID at the polls prevents fraud. But the judges said it fixes “problems that did not exist.”

“This ruling is a stinging rebuke of the state’s attempt to undermine African-American voter participation, which had surged over the last decade,”  Dale Ho, director of the ACLU’s Voting Rights Project, told the News & Observer. “It is a major victory for North Carolina voters and for voting rights.”