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What We Do


Democracy North Carolina is the state’s most respected source of impartial data on the role of money in politics, voter participation and good government. Learn more »


Democracy North Carolina is one of the few advocacy groups in our state to maintain an on-the-ground grassroots organizing presence every year, all year round. Learn more »


Democracy North Carolina is dedicated to inspiring and training new civic leaders for our state, especially new leaders from younger generations who will secure and protect pro-democracy reform in the years to come. Learn more »


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Sign up now for Democracy North Carolina’s email alerts for exclusive alerts on the latest news, research, resources, events and actions impacting the state of democracy in North Carolina.

ACT NOW: Hold Senator Ralph Hise Accountable

The chair of the NC Senate Select Committee on Elections has failed to provide answers to serious charges about the misuse of his campaign money. We need to hold him accountable — and the State Board of Elections needs to use its authority to inspect the bank records of the campaign.

Become a Digital Democracy Defender 

Democracy NC’s Digital Democracy Defenders (or #3D) is our first-ever online crowdspeaking team that amplifies our most important messages on social media by helping us say it together. Sign up now for upcoming information on how to spread the Democracy NC word where you already are — on social media.

Fight for Democracy, One Action at a Time

Whether you have a few minutes, a few hours, or a bit longer, there’s always time to fight for Democracy. Sign a petition, volunteer for us, attend an event… Whatever you want to do, take action today and be part of a  movement standing together for a political system that works for all.

ACT: Sign the Petition to End Illegal Gerrymandering

In an effort to make North Carolina’s elections fair, reduce political divides, and stop racial gerrymandering (and the endless litigation that follows), Democracy North Carolina joins our coalition partners to support legislation that establishes an independent commission to create voting districts in a fair and open process. Join us in calling for our lawmakers to support independent redistricting reform ~ we’ll deliver the message.

REQUEST A SCREENING: “Democracy for Sale”

North Carolina — perhaps more than any other state in the Union — has been transformed by the new and growing tidal wave of political spending. Zach Galifianakis, the comic star of “The Hangover” movies, travels back to his home state to investigate how North Carolina has become a bellwether for how the money of a few has come to dominate our democracy. Request a screening near you.

MLK ACTION GUIDE: Step Toward Justice

The legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. calls us to fight for justice in 2017. Download or order print versions of our all-new MLK-inspired action guide — for your event, rally, march, school, community or faith center!

Become a BOE Watchdog

County Boards of Elections are meeting monthly to debate plans for where and when you can vote. Take action now ~ become a BOE Watchdog in your county.

 Join our Faith Ambassador Network

Become the point of contact for voter information in your faith community and join a statewide network of thousands of people of faith leading the charge to help their members vote.

Stay informed

Voting rules and procedures are constantly changing. For up-to-the-minute voting news and information, follow us on InstagramTwitter and Facebook, and subscribe to our email updates.

What’s New?

Democracy NC Responds to SCOTUS Decision in in Covington Redistricting Case

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected a request by North Carolina lawmakers to review a case that struck down 2011 state legislative districts drawn as illegal racial gerrymanders. The Court also sent the case back to the lower court to determine whether elections should be held in 2017 as initially ordered. Democracy North Carolina praised the decision, saying “for too long , North Carolinians have been beholden to lawmakers in discriminatory districts.”

Democracy NC Responds to Supreme Court Remand of Racial Gerrymandering Case

The U.S. Supreme Court decided Tuesday to send a racial gerrymandering case back to the N.C. Supreme Court in light of  last week’s Cooper v. Harris decision. Dickson v. Rucho is one of two racial gerrymandering cases that were left pending at the U.S. Supreme Court. Justices last week decided Cooper v. Harris,  affirming a lower court ruling finding North Carolina’s GOP drew unconstitutionally racially gerrymandered congressional districts. Democracy North Carolina praised the decision by the U.S. Supreme Court, calling on the state Supreme Court to finally provide “the fair and legal Congressional and legislative districts” North Carolinians deserve.

Report: NC Adds 1 Million Voters from Obama to Trump

North Carolina has added nearly one million voters to the registration rolls since Barack Obama’s first victory in the state in May 2008 – and a surprising four out of five of them (80%) are refusing to choose a party label, according to an analysis by the voting rights group Democracy North Carolina.

Democracy NC Celebrates Supreme Court’s Decision on Monster Law

Democracy North Carolina celebrates this victory that has been years in the making. Importantly, the evidence used to defeat the 2013 Monster Law came from an analysis of who previously used the provisions restricted by the law (such as same-day registration), as well who would likely be harmed by a new photo ID requirement. Based on that evidence, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals rightly concluded the Monster Law (H589) aimed to suppress the votes of African Americans “with almost surgical precision.” Read more >>

Senate Elections Committee Chair Violates Disclosure Law, Is Suspected of Excess Payments to Himself

Democracy NC is calling on State Sen. Ralph Hise, chair of the Senate Select Committee on Elections, to recuse himself from any further involvement with restructuring the State Board of Elections because he faces charges of violating campaign disclosure laws and illegally pocketing more than $10,000 from his campaign account.

New Poll Supports Voters’ Call for Redistricting Reform

What’s one thing that Donald Trump supporters and African Americans in North Carolina agree on? By large majorities, according to a new poll, they think the way state legislators draw their political districts is unfair and too influenced by partisan politics. The poll, commissioned by the nonpartisan group Democracy North Carolina, reveals unusually broad support across the political spectrum for redistricting reform.

Democracy NC Responds to Elections Report, Calls for Education

Voting rights organization Democracy North Carolina issued responded to the N.C. State Board of Elections (NCSBE) release of post-election audits from the 2016 general election. The NCSBE audit entitled Post-Election Audit Report: General Election 2016 includes the agency’s investigations of ineligible votes. “We are pleased that the N.C. State Board of Elections is using careful research to protect the security of our voting system while also protecting each citizen’s right to vote…” (more)

Democracy NC Calls for Criminal Investigation of McCrory Conspiracy Against NC Voters

Voting rights group Democracy North Carolina released a report providing a first, county-by-county look at the human cost of hundreds of false voter fraud allegations leveled by the 2016 reelection campaign of former North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory. The report entitled The Deceit of Voter Fraud is a product of a five-month investigation into false allegations of voter misconduct and uncovers a pattern of unsubstantiated charges of election fraud and irregularities, without regard for the harassment and harmful impact on innocent voters. Democracy North Carolina is calling for a criminal investigation by state and federal agencies into these findings of wrongdoing.

Democracy NC Statement on S68 – Rewrite of Election Boards

The General Assembly passed another bill (S68) to combine regulation of ethics, elections and lobbying under one agency – which in itself may have merits. But GOP lawmakers manipulated the makeup of the state and local boards to give Republicans control over all decisions.  See our response.

Voters Accused of Fraud Share Stories of Shock & Anger, Push State Elections Board for Changes

Voters in 16 North Carolina counties who were falsely accused of voter fraud by Gov. Pat McCrory’s 2016 reelection campaign are sharing their stories of shock and outrage with the State Board of Elections and calling on the agency to change the process that allowed charges to be filed against them without any evidence of wrongdoing. We share their stories. 

DATA HIGHLIGHT: Beer Money Buys Protection from Competition

On March 4, 2017, The Charlotte Observer published an unusual story about NC legislative leaders stifling competition, contrary to their call to liberate business from government regulation. Craft brewers in cities across the state want to expand production, but a state law requires them to market their product through established beer distributors if they produce more than 25,000 barrels a year. The craft brewers want to raise the cap and have the option to sell without a middleman, but as the story says, “a big campaign donor is getting in the way.” Democracy North Carolina analyzed the campaign money donated by North Carolina beer wholesalers for the Observer. The total during 2013-2016 is astonishing.

Democracy NC Applauds Actions By Governor, Attorney General to Protect Voting Rights

Following weeks of calls and emails from constituents, today Governor Roy Cooper and Attorney General Josh Stein took steps to withdraw the state’s petition for a Writ of Certiorari to the U.S. Supreme Court of State of North Carolina v. North Carolina State Conference of the NAACP, the state’s strict voting law overturned by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals last year. The Supreme Court is expected to review the Writ of Certiorari at its March 3 conference. In a statement applauding this action, Democracy North Carolina Executive Director Bob Hall called it a “wise decision.” 

ANALYSIS: Who Voted in 2016 & Who Didn’t

New data from the State Board of Elections shows that 69% of North Carolina’s 6.9 million registered voters cast ballots in the 2016 presidential election, just 1 percent behind the modern turnout record set in 2008. But an analysis by the voting rights group Democracy North Carolina reveals wide variations in who showed up and who didn’t among 47 subgroups of voters.

General Assembly Republicans Aim to Rig the System for Control

Senate Bill 4 is one glaring example of the legislation aimed at rigging the system to undercut the election of Roy Cooper as Governor and Michael Morgan as Supreme Court justice. In a deceitful display of raw power, Republican leaders of the NC General Assembly changed from smiling helpers of hurricane victims to greedy manipulators determined to expand their power, even as the federal courts said their legislative districts (and election) were illegitimate.

Democracy NC Announces Retirement of Longtime Executive Director

Longtime Democracy North Carolina Executive Director Bob Hall has announced that he will retire next spring. For the past 25 years, Hall has directed the organization’s campaigns to increase voter participation and reduce the corrupting role of money in North Carolina politics. The organization is currently leading a national search for Hall’s successor.

Research Finds Election Protests from McCrory Campaign Malign Innocent People

A new analysis reveals that nearly half of the people that the Pat McCrory campaign and its allies have accused of illegally voting as felons are not serving a felony sentence. Claims of widespread fraud are being repeated over and over. In reality, the number of votes contested in the McCrory campaign protests are very small and many of the claims are completely false.

Wake County Superior Court Refuses to Keep Durham County Polls Open Despite Delays and Glitches

Wake County Superior Court Judge Don Stephens denied a request to extend voting hours in Durham County, N.C. The request was brought by the Southern Coalition for Social Justice and Democracy North Carolina after computer glitches earlier in the day led to delays and long voting lines.

Democracy NC Statement on State Board of Elections Approvals of Early Voting Plans

In a 12-hour marathon meeting, the N.C. State Board of Elections resolved the contested Early Voting plans from 33 of the state’s 100 counties. Democracy North Carolina called the meeting an “overall victory” and lauded the actions of the State Board, its staff, and the local leaders who fought for strong Early Voting plans.

Democracy NC Calls for “All Hands on Deck” After SCOTUS Denies Stay of Voting Law

The U.S. Supreme Court has rejected a request by North Carolina to temporarily reinstate the state’s restrictive 2013 voting law. With this decision, a federal appeals court’s July ruling will stand, at least through 2016, eliminating North Carolina’s photo ID requirement and restoring preregistration, 17 days of Early Voting, same-day registration, and out-of-precinct voting. Democracy North Carolina, which opposed the 2013 voting law, heralded the Court’s action and called for the state leaders to turn their full attention to the important work of holding fair elections this fall.

Democracy NC: Ruling Overturning Gerrymandered Legislative Districts a “Tremendous Victory” for Voters

A three-judge panel ruled August 11 that North Carolina legislators unconstitutionally used race when they drew legislative boundaries for state House and Senate members. Democracy NC praised the ruling, which overturned 28 N.C. House and Senate districts, as the latest federal ruling tossing partisan district lines drawn by lawmakers.

Democracy NC Highlights Need for Strong Early Voting Plans: 73,500 Extra Hours – More Voters, Needing More Time to Vote

New figures show that North Carolina voters will need more time to cast ballots this fall, and they’ll face longer lines at the polls if action is not taken in the next 10 days by county and state officials. Democracy North Carolina said five indicators point to “a disastrous train wreck at the polls” if county boards of elections do not adopt more expansive early voting schedules than they used in the last presidential election.

VICTORY! Federal Appeals Court Strikes Down NC Voting Restrictions

On July 29, a federal appeals court struck down North Carolina’s restrictive omnibus voting law in a sweeping victory for voting rights, holding that it was “passed with racially discriminatory intent.” Democracy North Carolina, the state’s largest voting-rights organization, praised the ruling.

Click here to see all of the latest Democracy NC posts on Voting Rights.

Research Highlights

Click here to view our library of research reports.