WASHINGTON — A federal appeals court on Wednesday ordered a lower court to block two new voting restrictions in North Carolina, saying there was “no doubt” the measures would disenfranchise minorities.
North Carolina will now be required to reinstate same-day voter registration, as well as allow voters to cast ballots even if they show up to vote in the wrong precinct.
In a two-to-one ruling, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit ruled that “whether the number is thirty or thirty-thousand, surely some North Carolina minority voters will be disproportionately adversely affected in the upcoming election” and that it was important to act now, since “there could be no do-over and no redress” once the election was over.
By Suzy Khimm
Statement of Carolyn W. Colvin, Acting Commissioner of Social Security, on New Payments to Same-Sex Married Couples
December 16, 2013
“I am pleased to announce that, effective today, Social Security is processing some widow’s and widower’s claims by surviving members of same-sex marriages and paying benefits where they are due. In addition, we are able to pay some one-time lump sum death benefit claims to surviving same-sex spouses. As I stated shortly after the Supreme Court decision on Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, our goal is to treat all Americans with dignity and respect.