Tim Wilson: Sovereign states

March 11, 2013 

Sovereign states

In oral arguments about the continued constitutionality of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, Chief Justice John Roberts asked the U.S. Solicitor General whether his position is that “citizens in the South are more racist than citizens in the North.”

In a March 5 editorial, you stated that Section 5 should continue, so it appears that you believe that residents in the 40 N.C. counties covered by Section 5 are more racist than residents in 60 others. You have endorsed a scheme that says the residents of Granville and Vance counties are more racist than those in Wake and Johnston counties.

Furthermore, you have justified keeping North Carolina as a “trustee of the federal government” (Justice Kennedy) by opposing efforts to install photo ID requirements for voting in North Carolina.

However one feels about voter ID, the U.S. Supreme Court has already declared it constitutional. Using Section 5 to say that residents of North Carolina can’t install voter ID but those in Indiana and Georgia can is a prime reason the court will likely strike down Section 5.

Treating sovereign states differently requires the utmost scrutiny. It is past time to treat North Carolina the same as the majority of other states.

Tim Wilson

Raleigh

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