The Student News Site of Appalachian State University

The Appalachian

The Student News Site of Appalachian State University

The Appalachian

The Student News Site of Appalachian State University

The Appalachian

Newsletter Signup

Get our news delivered straight to your inbox every week.

* indicates required

NC Senate bill may affect student-voter turnout

A bill was filed in the North Carolina General Assembly on April 3 that would remove a tax credit for families who have children registered to vote outside of their home address.

According to SB 667, titled Equalize Voter Rights, parents could no longer claim children as dependents if the child does not register to vote at the address of the parent. The bill would also require voters to register at the same address as their vehicle registration.

Appalachian State University political science professor Ruth Strickland compared the bill to a poll tax, and said that she does not expect the bill to pass.

Strickland also said that she wasn’t sure the measure was constitutional. A U.S. Supreme Court decision in 1979, SYMM v. U.S., held that a college student has the right to vote where he or she attends college, Strickland said.

Town Council member Andy Ball said that with the discussion over voter IDs, there was an expectation of some “push back” from legislature, but he didn’t expect any bill this radical.

Ball said the bill would go pretty far to disenfranchise college students.

“It looks like now they are trying to restrict the franchise to people who tend to vote Democrat,” Ball said. “It is clear that college students are more of a liberal demographic and it would seem that the conservatives have the purse strings at the power in Raleigh.”

Ball said the voter ID requirement would hurt at-risk populations such as the homeless and senior citizens, who tend to need social and government services and people who tend to be more socially liberal.

Ball said that having three Appalachian students elected into local government offices has been a success in integrating the Appalachian community and the Boone community, in which student voting has played a big role.

Ball said Republicans have the votes to pass the bill and “the governor will certainly sign it.”

The only way to defeat the bill with little political opportunity is with public pressure. Ball is working on organizing a student’s day at the capital.

“After working with several ASU students in our Get-Out-the-Vote efforts, I know how intelligent, informed and invested they are in the policies of our state and our nation,” said Emily Bish, Get-Out-the-Vote chair for the Democratic Party of Watauga County.

Bish said she is extremely dismayed that legislature finds it acceptable to create barriers for student’s right to vote.

The proposed bills combined make it clear that the intent is to make it difficult for students to vote, Bish said.

“Not only will I be participating to fight against this bill, I want to encourage all students and their parents to do so as well,” Bish said. “Students, regardless of political persuasions, should stand up for their right to vote in the place where they reside.”

President of the College Republicans Caroline Hartman said the club wants all voters, including students, to be active in the political process.

“Senate bill 667 does not take away the student’s right to vote, it does, however, impact their decision about where to register,” she said.

Former President of the College Democrats Lia Poteet said the bill will “simultaneously discourage student voting and raise taxes” as well as undermine the rights upheld for students by the Supreme Court.

Story: STEPHANIE SANSOUCY, Senior News Reporter and JOSHUA FARMER, News Editor

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Appalachian
$1500
$5000
Contributed
Our Goal

We hope you appreciate this article! Before you move on, our student staff wanted to ask if you would consider supporting The Appalachian's award-winning journalism. We are celebrating our 90th anniversary of The Appalachian in 2024!

We receive funding from the university, which helps us to compensate our students for the work they do for The Appalachian. However, the bulk of our operational expenses — from printing and website hosting to training and entering our work into competitions — is dependent upon advertising revenue and donations. We cannot exist without the financial and educational support of our fellow departments on campus, our local and regional businesses, and donations of money and time from alumni, parents, subscribers and friends.

Our journalism is produced to serve the public interest, both on campus and within the community. From anywhere in the world, readers can access our paywall-free journalism, through our website, through our email newsletter, and through our social media channels. Our supporters help to keep us editorially independent, user-friendly, and accessible to everyone.

If you can, please consider supporting us with a financial gift from $10. We appreciate your consideration and support of student journalism at Appalachian State University. If you prefer to make a tax-deductible donation, or if you would prefer to make a recurring monthly gift, please give to The Appalachian Student News Fund through the university here: https://securelb.imodules.com/s/1727/cg20/form.aspx?sid=1727&gid=2&pgid=392&cid=1011&dids=418.15&bledit=1&sort=1.

Donate to The Appalachian
$1500
$5000
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Appalachian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *