Data Highlight: Let Students Vote

Data Highlight: Let Students Vote

NC Rep. Larry Hall and several other state legislators have introduced House Bill 240, “Allow NC College ID to Meet Voter ID Requirement,” at this link:

LetStudentsVoteDataThe law requiring voters to present a photo ID, beginning in 2016, has generated considerable controversy, as well as legal challenges in federal and state courts. Often lost in the debate is the actual requirement. It turns out that North Carolina’s ID law is one of the most restrictive in the nation; it’s not a typical ID law. It accepts only four types of photo IDs: a DMV-issued ID; US passport; a military or veteran ID card; or a tribal card from a federal or state-recognized tribe.

Here are the facts:

  • A majority of states with an ID requirement allow students to use their campus photo ID to vote or they accept other documents beside a photo ID. North Carolina has arguably the most restrictive list of acceptable IDs in the nation.
  • Recently, the State Board of Elections matched its list of registered voters with the Division of Motor Vehicles’ list of people with a NC driver’s license or identity card. The Board found that 218,733 or 3% of registered voters did not have a state photo ID. That number includes 44,777 registered voters who are age 18 to 25 – which is 20% of the 218,733 total.
  • But youth age 18-25 make up only 12% of the 6 million registered voters in North Carolina.  So they are much more heavily impacted by the ID requirement: they are 12% of all voters, but 20% of voters without an acceptable ID. Put another way, they are 1 in 8 of all voters but 1 in 5 of those without an acceptable ID.

It just makes sense to accept a student photo ID issued by a NC accredited college, university or community college.


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