A new report from the State Board of Elections found as many as 613,000 voters, or 9.25 percent of North Carolinas voters, may not have a state issued drivers license or identification card. The report comes ahead of Republican efforts to push for voter ID legislation in the upcoming session.
The new analysis, which compared Division of Motor Vehicles records to state voter lists, discovered that 53 percent of the voters in question are Democrats and a quarter are over age 65. A disproportionate share, about 30 percent, are black.
State election officials cautioned that the number (612,955) could be lower because some voters listed drivers license numbers that dont match state DMV records. There are 6.5 million voters registered in the state. Also, about 67 percent of those who didnt match are women, suggesting a name discrepancy may be at fault. But the new numbers, which were recently requested by legislative researchers, will only add fuel for critics who suggest an effort to pass legislation requiring a photo ID will disenfranchise voters, particularly Democrats.
Access sells well
A new political nonprofit selling its access to the new Republican governor announced its $1,000-a-person VIP reception with Pat McCrory and $75-ticket inaugural celebration Saturday is sold out. The Foundation for North Carolina credited it to the great enthusiasm for Governor Pat McCrory. The Inauguration Day party is overshadowing the traditional inaugural ball the night before. The earlier event is hosted by the Junior League of Raleigh as a fundraiser.
Website monitoring McCrory
Progress NC, the liberal advocacy group that brought you WhoPaysMcCrory.com an effort to highlight Pat McCrorys shielded personal financials during the campaign is now behind paytoplaypat.com. The website is focused on the donations new DHHS Secretary Aldona Wos made to McCrorys election efforts. The group tallied more than $200,000 from Wos, her husband, his companys employees and related family members.
Shanahan turns to FBI
New state Department of Public Safety Secretary Kieran Shanahan has named former FBI agent Frank Perry as his interim chief operating officer.
Perry replaces Mikael Gross, who was dismissed on Monday, a spokeswoman for DPS confirmed Tuesday. Gross has been with the department since it consolidated in January 2012. Before that he was senior counsel for the General Assembly.
Perry was a well-known federal law enforcement officer when he ran the FBIs Raleigh office around the time of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, and later through his work with the state auditor and the state Ethics Commission. He also co-founded a foundation for ethics in public service.
Perry will oversee the operations and administration of the department during this transition phase.
Walter Jones apparently evened a score last week. The Farmville Republican was one of nine Republicans who voted for someone other than Rep. John Boehner as House Speaker.
Jones, who Boehner removed from the House Financial Services Committee last month, voted for David Walker, former head of the Government Accountability Office.
Boehner, R-Ohio, was re-elected Speaker of the House with 220 votes over Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., who received 192 votes.
On the Democratic side, Rep. Mike McIntyre of Lumberton voted for fellow Blue Dog Jim Cooper, D-Tenn, instead of Pelosi.
Staff writers John Frank, Craig Jarvis and Franco Ordonez