NC General Assembly refused to "match" a $4 million grant from the Federal Help America Vote Act (HAVA) -- a "match" of $660,000 -- because Sen. Andrew Brock of Mocksville decided, against all evidence to the contrary, that the state's election machinery just didn't need it.
Every local Board of Elections in the state is now facing decisions about cutting off Early Voting sites, or limiting their hours, or both. In Wake County, where some 57% of registered voters voted early in 2008 (and you know whom the majority voted for, right? which explains the conservative hostility), the County Commission gave the Board of Elections about half of what it needs to fund and maintain just the early voting sites that were open four years ago. We're watching their struggle to maintain ballot access rather than cave to the Republican grand scheme of making the act of voting as difficult as possible.
"Grand scheme"? You betcha! It's national in scope, and it's organized, right down to our local stop-ASU-students-from-voting campaign organized by Deborah Greene. Ari Berman has done outstanding reporting on the whole sorry chapter in our recent history.