Under the Dome

Video tries to clear up voter ID confusion in N.C.

UPDATED — With potentially confusing messages out there about voter ID requirements, the state Board of Elections is out with a new round of public service announcements for TV and radio trying to set the record straight.

When voters show up at their polling place they will be asked for photo identification. If they don’t have any, they will still be allowed to cast provisional ballots.

Those voters will have to declare that there was a “reasonable impediment” to obtaining identification, such as a lack of documentation, family obligations, transportation problems, work schedule, illness or disability.

They will also have to provide their date of birth, last four digits of their Social Security number, or present their current voter registration card or something showing their name and address, such as a utility bill or bank statement.

Once that information is verified, the provisional ballot will be counted.

One tip: Photo ID isn’t required if you vote by absentee mail-in ballot.

A lot more details are online at VoterID.nc.gov.

Last month, Kim Strach, executive director of the state Board of Elections, wrote to NAACP state chapter president Rev. William Barber expressing concern that remarks he made at a news conference and information on a flyer his organization was distributing were “overbroad.”

Barber emphasized that people can vote with or without a driver’s license other photo ID. While that’s kind of what state elections officials are saying, Strach emphasized that people aren’t able to simply leave their photo ID at home and vote. In signing the declaration, they are saying they don’t have such an identification.

“This could result in the disenfranchisement of voters we both serve,” Strach wrote.

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