To the Editor:
I thought the new Republican majority in the North Carolina legislature was elected because voters felt they could do more to generate jobs and improve the economy in North Carolina than the Democrats. Yet some of the first legislation from this body does nothing to generate jobs or improve the economy. Instead, this legislation would waste North Carolina taxpayer dollars on purely partisan issues.
The bill requiring voter picture identification at the polls, co-sponsored by Sen. Ralph Hise (Avery, Haywood, Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, and Yancy counties), is estimated to cost North Carolina taxpayers $20 million.
My research tells me that improper voting in North Carolina is hardly a problem. Less than 5 votes in 1 million in North Carolina involve fraud that a photo ID would stop. You are more likely to be struck by lightning in North Carolina than have somebody steal your vote. This bill would discriminate against those who do not own cars — students, the elderly, people with disabilities, and low-income people, folks who tend to vote for the Democrats.
One of the other pieces of legislation is the bill to force Attorney General Roy Cooper to join legal action to block the federal law which requires residents to carry health insurance. Why should North Carolina waste taxpayer money on this effort when other states have already filed suit? This federal issue is already working its way through the court system, without the need to waste North Carolina taxpayer money.
The news is full of stories about draconian cuts to necessities — education, medical care, safety nets for low income folks, incentives to create jobs. Why waste taxpayer money on partisan politics when we need jobs?