The Justice Department is suing the state of North Carolina for alleged racial discrimination in new voting laws that push back early voting periods and create tougher voter identification requirements for citizens.
North Carolina is the latest southern state that the Obama administration is attempting to block from implementing new voter laws. The state of Texas was recently sued by the Department of Justice over their ID laws that are considered discriminatory by minorities.
Republican lawmakers in North Carolina say the new laws will crack down on voter fraud. But civil rights groups say the new restrictions are unnecessary and are targeting minority and young voters' impact in future elections.
"It is especially troubling that the law would significantly narrow the early voting window that enabled hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians, including disproportionately large numbers of minority voters, to cast ballots during the last election cycle," Eric Holder said in a statement on the lawsuit.
The DOJ will challenge the law that eliminates a seven-day early voting period and eliminates a person's right to cast a ballot the same day that they register to vote. The federal government will also challenge the requirement to present state-issued identification in order to vote. Many of those who do not have this type of ID are young, Black, poor or elderly.
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