NAACP leaders vow to fight SC's new voter ID law
Tue, 19 Jul 2011 12:51:12 GMT —
NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WACH, AP) -- Leaders of the NAACP say they will do everything they can to fight South Carolina's new voter ID law.
About 40 people turned out in North Charleston on Monday for a town hall meeting sponsored by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.Related Stories SC NAACP holding town hall meeting on voter ID Jesse Jackson calls voter ID law new poll tax Group protesting state's new voter ID law Haley signs bill requiring voters show photo ID Controversial voter ID bill draws strong reaction from both sides
Nelson Rivers, a vice president of the national civil rights group, says that in the United States, steps should be taken to include people in the voting process. He says the voter ID law just excludes people.
"In America, we should be trying to include people in the voting process. This law excludes people. It reminds us in the bad days of old, all the things we've done to exclude people, particularly African Americans at the time from voting," said Rivers.
Officials estimate as many as 180,000 voters statewide could be disenfranchised by the law requiring photo IDs to vote.
The law has been signed by Gov. Nikki Haley but won't take effect until reviewed by the Justice Department.
South Carolina is only the tenth state in the country to adopt such legislation.
Supporters of the bill say the legislation would crack down on voter fraud that is going on.
"What we're doing is protecting the sanctity of the ballot box in South Carolina by requiring a simple identification -- just as if you were getting prescription drugs or just as if you were trying to get on an airplane," said State Representative Chip Limehouse.
The NAACP plans four more town hall meetings, including one in Columbia. That meeting will be held on Tuesday, August 2 at 6:30 p.m. at DeQuincey Newman United Methodist Church, 7801 Wilson Boulevard.
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(The Associated Press and WCIV contributed to this report.)