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Groups to fight voter ID

Civil rights and voting rights groups are launching a campaign against a proposed voter ID law that's sure to pass the legislature early this session.

The state NAACP, the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, Democracy North Carolina, and others will talk Wednesday about an opposition plan that includes public pressure, a public service announcement and a website.

The Republican-led legislature was not able to get a voter ID law past former Gov. Bev Perdue's veto, but Gov. Pat McCrory wants voter ID.

Perdue picks elections board

Gov. Beverly Perdue appointed members to the State Board of Elections on Monday.

Perdue was required by law to appoint members from lists submitted by the state political parties. The board includes three Democrats and two Republicans who serve four year terms.

Perdue reappointed Democrats Larry Leake of Mars Hill and Robert Cordle of Charlotte, as well as Republican Charles Winfree of Greensboro. New appointees were Democrat Anita Earls of Durham and Republican William Peaslee of Raleigh.

They replace Democrat Genevieve Sims and Republican Lorraine Shinn.

Earls is executive director and founder of the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, a position she has held since September 2007. From 2003 to 2007, she was director of advocacy at the UNC Center for Civil Rights. Earls also served as deputy assistant attorney general for civil rights at the U.S. Department of Justice from 1998 to 2000.

She received a law degree from Yale University and an undergraduate degree from Williams College.

Peaslee runs a general practice law firm in Cary. He was political director, special legal counsel and chief of staff of the state Republican Party until 2006.

Peaslee received a law degree from Campbell University and an undergraduate degree from UNC-Chapel Hill.

The State Board of Elections supervises and regulates primary and general elections in North Carolina.

Panel to discuss redistricting

The N.C. Institute for Constitutional Law will consider redistricting.

The think tank will examine the constitutional and practical implications of Congressional redistricting at a May 7 program.

Former Supreme Court Justice Bob Orr and N.C. Coalition for Lobbying and Government Reform director Jane Pinsky will use the program to advocate for a nonpartisan independent redistricting commission.

A panel will include legislative drafting director Gerry Cohen, Southern Coalition for Social Justice director Anita Earls, UNC-Chapel Hill law professor Robert Joyce, Common Cause director Bob Phillips, and attorneys Thomas Farr and Carl Thurman III.

Recent decisions by the North Carolina and U.S. supreme courts have thrown some kinks in redistricting plans.

"A truly independent redistricting commission may be just the answer to provide constitutional districts for the future," said Orr in a statement.

The program will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Raleigh Country Club.

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