I'm going to recognize co-chairman Lewis to present the bill. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Chairman, isn't that 1267? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Is that not what I said? [SPEAKER CHANGES] You said 1276. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Dyslexia is a tough disease.... Representative Lewis, gentleman has the floor to debate 1267 or 1276, whichever it is. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you Mr. Chairman and members of the committee. I do stand before you to present 1267 this morning. House Bill 1267 is a very straightforward attempt to clarify the state statue and make absolutely clear that if an individual is able and qualified and registered and goes through the process of exercising their right to vote that that vote would in fact count even if the person became deceased between the time they cast the vote and the time that the canvas was held. Representative Gilmore may wish to speak to this and I will certainly yield to him in just a moment. I will tell you this became known to me back in May of this year and when the vote of Mr. Everett Harris was challenged the reason given by those that challenged the vote was that they themselves had had a family member who had also cast a valid vote and then had that valid vote challenged prior to the election cycle. We have through staff and otherwise spoken to both the families that were involved here and they both approve this bill. With that Mr. Chairman will you accept Representative ?? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Absolutely. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you Representative Lewis. Very well said. What you stated about the bill resolves an issue. This happened in my district several years ago to a family. The ballot was challenged and it made no difference in the election whatsoever the challenging of the ballot. It was just challenged because the gentlemen passed away. Pretty much this bill takes a philosophy that once a person marks their ballot and turns the ballot in, seals that absentee envelope or sticks it in the machine that they've officially cast their ballot at that point so I think it's a good clarification and a good way to let the voters voices be heard. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Any questions from members of the committee for the bill sponsor? Seeing no questions is there a motion? Alright, I saw several hands on a motion. I actually saw Dr. Fulghum's hand first though. Representative Fulghum. Gentlemen moves adoption of the House Bill 1267 further discussion or debate? Seeing no hands means favor of the motion for a favorable report to House Bill 1267 please say Aye. Aye. As opposed no. The aye's have it the bill is given a favorable report. The next bill on our calendar is Senate Bill 403 I believe there is a proposed committee substitute without objection. The PCS is before the committee for discussion. Representative Lewis is recognized to explain the bill. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you Mr. Chairman, members of the committee. I do stand before you to present the proposed committee substitute of the Senate bill 403. At the committee's pleasure I will go through the bill and then I'll be glad to answer any inquiries that may or exist or certainly they can be relayed to the staff. Section 1 of the bill is simply a language clean up. Trying to specify that some one has to be affiliated with a political party for 90 days prior to filing for office. This is not a change in actual policy is is simply clarifying language. Section 2 specifies that the order that candidates appear on the ballot will be performed consistently...[SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Lewis, hold on just a minute. There should be copies of the PCS. Are there members who do not have copies of the PCS in your folder? Ok, we'll stand down just a moment. It's Senate Bill 403 you should have a PCS version 7 where it says corrected copy 51313.
[??] [SPEAKER CHANGES] Okay, it's coming around. [SPEAKER CHANGES] [??] [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yeah, check your folder. [SPEAKER CHANGES] [??] [SPEAKER CHANGES] No, it's not in the folder, [??] passed out. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Not in the folder? Okay. [SPEAKER CHANGES] [??] [SPEAKER CHANGES] It would consist of eight pages, Senate bill 40-- [SPEAKER CHANGES] They're passing it out. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yeah, they're passing it out now, so... [SPEAKER CHANGES] [??] [SPEAKER CHANGES] And staff reminded me also, this is the same PCS that was emailed to you last night, if you read your email last night, so you have it, but there is a fresh hard copy being handed to you right now. Do all members have a copy? Alright, Representative Lewis, you're recognized to continute explaining the bill, sir. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Mr. Chairman. In the interest of clarity, with the permission of the chair and the [??] of the committee, I'll just start again. Section one of the bill is not a change in policy, it's a clarification in language specifying that someone must be affiliated with a political party for at least 90 days prior to filing for office to recieve that party's political nomination. Section two specifies that the ballot order for candidates on primary and nonpartisan official ballots will be done under the random selection mode that has been used for years by the state board of election. Again, not a policy change, a clarification. Section three of the bill establishes the -- pardon me, Mr. Chairman -- section three of the bill clarifies that when you are reviewing the cumulative total number of scheduled voting hours-- which is, members, I'm on page 2, line 15 -- that you can indeed count the hours that the board of elections or the central polling place itself is open. It's my understanding that that is the way it was interpreted and implemented but we wanted to make sure that that was clear. Section four of the bill is merely a clarifying change, this was a policy decision and debate that was held in the last session, this will clarify the statutes. Again, this bill only deals with the technical change required in that matter. Section five is a statutory reference change. Section six corrects a error in the statutory language and inserts -- a little "i" there beside that you can all see. Section seven of the bill, the substantive part of this is found down beginning on line 26. You know we wanted to include the tribal enrollment card issued by federally recognized tribes as one of the acceptable forms of identification in the voter ID. We wanted to make clear some of the tribal expiration cards do not have expiration dates on them, but they do have issuant dates. And so this is permissive language, it expands the kinds of IDs that can be accepted by saying that if the card was issued fewer than eight years ago, that the card would still be valid. Section eight of the bill- (recording ends)
Speaker: Section ?? merely clarifies that funds that remain and the funds that remain would have been used for the judicial ?? may still be used for that purpose to those funds have been expended page 4 section 9 of the bill merely clarifies ? state board elections being a technical change section 10 ?? all we thought elections to boards and found out the fact we did and so this again is a technical change.Section 11 this has to do those with that attempted and produce to make clear ??zip code it is not in validate the fact, Speaker Changes: Representative ?? gentlemen have a question on this section, Speaker Changes: Not surely and i have a different section , Speaker Changes: If the member have a question on a particular section just raise our hand I'll recognize you , Speaker Changes: Representative ??, Speaker Changes: I thought that we are waiting to ?? I'm looking for at the summary on the section 5 ?? to the powers and it is of counter board education ??, Speaker Changes: Mr.chairman would you precise after this, Speaker Changes: You all ?? carefully, Speaker Changes: I believe the board of education might be ?? on the summary all of that we put in GS 163-22 sub division A and it shouldn't' be of sub division 163 but 33 of sub division 3, Speaker Changes: Representative ?? Speaker Changes: Thank you Mr.Chairman, Speaker Changes: My question is to down the section 4 that we are talking about registration on high school is this not gonna change register about 17 years old ?? by the general election but doesn't impact them at all ??, Speaker Changes: Representative ?? Speaker Changes: Thank you Mr.Chairman the question for the bill sponsor back on section 3 the question was understood ?? and the offside of election location and how I'm reading through page ?? 15 to 17 is that mistake is that still include both ??, Speaker Changes: Mr.Chairman i 'll try to respond with ?? in doors of the chair staff would correct Representative what that means is that there are some counties ?? not is the board of elections at their main central voting ?? to remain board of election or remain central vote ??, Speaker Changes: Thank you, Speaker Changes: Representative ??, Speaker Changes: Back with section 4 ?? we eliminated the program that allowed 16 year old vote to be preregister to vote training if i may ?, Speaker Changes: Mr.Chairman ?? with all the member of the which could be debated ?? in the last session of the ?? but i agrees with elements to preregistration how ever that was he policy decision tat was made last year this is clearly qualifying lengthy,
Representative Michaux. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Oh, is it a follow-up on that? Certainly. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Last year seems like a long time to me right now and I'm not sure that I was present or available for the discussion with regard to that but can we possibly, can you share now what the thinking was? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Well, Representative Mobley, this, the Chair is going to, this is a technical bill. I would say that that debate is not germane to this particular bill. That's a policy decision that's been made. This is just a technical bill to conform that. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux is recognized for a question. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yeah, I'm in the same section. You crossed out preregistration. This means that we cannot preregister 17-year-olds? Is that what you're telling me in that? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Chairman, it's my understanding that preregistration for 17-year-olds who will be 18 in time to participate in the next election is still allowed. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I just conferred with staff. When a 17-year-old registers, who is going to be 18 by the election, that's not a preregistration. That is just a registration. The preregistration had to do with those 16-year-old's. You're welcome to have staff answer that. That's- [SPEAKER CHANGES] When you register you can vote. When you preregister you preregister so that you can be ready to vote at a particular time. It sounds like to me like you're cutting out, what you're saying is, whoever interprets it is going to have a problem with that, in my book, because it sounds like to me you're not allowing them to preregister. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I'm going to let Ms. McGraw address that. That's clearly not the way the bill is but I'll let staff testify to that. Ms. McGraw. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux, in last year there had been a program in the statutes and it was called the Voter Preregistration Program. That was the term that was used and that specifically allowed 16 and 17-year-old's who would not have been eligible, as of the next election, to register, well to preregister, and then they were put on a list and the State Board would contact them before the election they would be eligible to vote in to activate that into a full voter registration. When that program was repealed we removed references to the term preregistration that refer to that program but we missed this one in another section in the statute. So this is a conforming change to take out that phrase. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Alright. Representative Fisher. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Mr. Chairman. A question for staff, maybe, or the bill sponsor, do we have any idea how long in section, I think it is section 8, when will those funds be exhausted? Any idea? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Chairman, I need to refer to staff or perhaps to the State Board. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I think Eric's going to address that. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Actually we were going to say we have no idea how many, what the dollar amount left in that fund is. The State Board might know or we're happy to follow-up with Fiscal Research and get that for you today. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Alright. Representative Lewis, you're recognized to continue explaining the bill. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Members, I believe that I had reached page 4, section 12. If that's not correct I'll be happy to back up further. This is language that clarifies that, pardon me I lost my own notes, this just says that a voter who is moved precincts within a county within a 30 day time period will be allowed to vote and their vote, of course, will count. This is in compliance with federal law. Moving on to section 13, this is a very interesting provision to me. When all of us file for office, all of the members in this room and those who seek to file for office, we're required to complete a Statement of Economic Interest and I'm sure you can all recall completing those in writing and submitting them to the Board of Elections. It was brought out to us that all the Board of
elections does with those is for them through the state ethics code mission where they are housed and actually, sometimes, entered into, they will actually be entered electronically from the hard, from the paper version. What this does is two things, one it would allow an individual to set up their own electronic account with the State Ethics Board, like all of us in this room have and enter the information online if they chose to do so. However, if they chose to continue to use the paper copy it would direct that that would go to the State Ethics Board instead of the State Board of the Elections. We did put a crosscheck in there that the State Board of the Ele-, the Executive Director's State Board of Elections would in fact notify the State Ethics Board of everyone who had filed so that they would have a cross reference to make sure that they received either an electronic filing or the paper filing within the ten day time period, as is required. It just really was a redundant amount of work to have it submitted to the County Board, which did nothing with it but submit it to the State Board, which really did nothing with it but walk it over to the Ethics Board. So we tried to clean that up. It's a very wordy session but it's, that's all it does. Section 14- [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Chairman. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I'm trying to be clear on that, if I can. David, if you don't mind, right now when we go file, for instance, for this office we file at our County Board and we file our statement of economic interest with our County Board. Now, what does this change in that? That's what I'm trying to get at. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Lewis. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux, you would still have the option to do that or, because you also file every April 15th with the State Ethics Board, you could simply log into your account and update it directly with them and not have to complete the forms. You could still choose to complete the forms but you would not be required to. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Lewis, I'm going to ask for staff, if they would, to clarify your answer. [SPEAKER CHANGES] That might be helpful. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux, the changes, right now, all legislators, all judicial officials, and all members of the Council of State file an annual statement of economic interest. In the odd numbered years that is filed with the State Ethics Commission directly. In the even numbered years or in their filing year if they serve a four or eight year term they file that statement of economic interest with the Board of Elections that they file their notice of candidacy will with. This is altering that one filing that comes with the notice of candidacy to say that it's filed with the State Ethics Commission, just like all of the others. It does not change the way in which you file it, whether you file electronically or on paper. It just changes the entity that receives that filing. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So, Mr. Chairman. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So, when I filed, if I file in the next election I could file directly with the State Board rather than with the county? Is that what I'm hearing? [SPEAKER CHANGES] You will file it directly with the State Ethics Commission. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Right, I mean, yeah, okay. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Lewis, would you like to continue to explain your bill. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Just to make, if I may, Mr. Chairman, just to make sure, for those who may have just heard an exchange with Representative Michaux, you still file for office the same way. This just deals with the statement of economic interest. Yes sir. Yes sir. Ladies and Gentlemen, section 14 has to do with the issuance of photo ID cards for the purpose of voting. Under current state law there's a crosscheck that an individual is registered with the U.S. Selective Service, the draft, whatever that's called, I'm sorry if I misspoke on that. This would remove that crosscheck for the purpose of getting this
this card. Section 15 is merely a statutory citation correction. Section 16 provides that there will be cooperation on list maintenance efforts between the State Board and the County Boards. Section 17- [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Chairman. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Fisher. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I have a question on section 16. If you look at the statute it says, "that the State Board of Elections shall adopt a uniform program that makes a diligent effort not less than twice a year to purge those records." And so is this redundant? Is this reinventing the wheel to have the, you have the County Boards doing this and now you're going to have the State Boards doing it and they're all going to be doing it no less than twice a year. So how many times do we need to do this and a follow-up to that is now much will it cost? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Lewis? [SPEAKER CHANGES] May I direct that to staff? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Ms. Churchill. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So, Representative Fisher, the State Board is charged with developing a uniform state-wide program. However, that program is implemented by the counties themselves. So if you keep reading in the statute, for the reasons that someone could be removed from the roles: death, conviction of a felony, or a change of address, all of those actions are actually taken by the County Board with instruction and information from the State Board under that uniform program. The change would simply allow the State Board, if they have all of the correct information under the statute, they could go ahead and act instead of the county. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Lewis. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Section 17 of the bill establishes that the process for second primaries and provides that voters may be registered between the first and second primary except for persons who's qualifications mature between the two primaries, in which case they would need to wait until after the second primary. What does that mean? If you were not old enough to vote in the May Primary then you could not register to vote prior to the July Second Primary. If you were then you may register to vote even if you did not take part in the May Primary. And section 18- [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Chair. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes, sir. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yeah, I got a question on this one now. Tell me what happens to the 17 year old who becomes 18 between the first primary and the second primary? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Lewis? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux, if he was, if the 17 year old was not eligible to vote in May then he would not be eligible to vote in July. [SPEAKER CHANGES] But he's registered, isn't he? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Go through the Chair, please. Representative Lewis, would you like to respond? [SPEAKER CHANGES] The 17 year old would have been qualified to have been registered only if he'd have been qualified to have voted in the May Primary. If he was not old enough to vote in the May Primary then he would not have been registered to vote in the May Primary. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Okay, I think, I think staff would like to clarify your answer as well. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Please. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Ms. McCraw. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux, the situation you refers to is actually under current law. If you look on page 7 of the bill, lines 43-46, current law states that a person who's qualifications to register and vote mature after the date of the first primary, which could include a person who turned 18 between the first and second primary and before the date of the second primary, may register on the date of the second primary when thus registered shall be entitled to vote in the second primary. There are a few other categories of individuals who's qualifications mature. That could include someone who's had rights restored after a felony or had attained citizenship status before the next primary. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux, you have a follow-up? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes, sir. So that person can vote in that second primary? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes, sir. That's what the current
Law says. [SPEAKER CHANGES] That's what I thought but it doesn't sound like it in the explanation. Thank you. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Lewis, would you like to proceed. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Only with first an apology for the flawed explanation. Section 18 if you will notice down on page 8 line 30 and 31, this is a statutory exchange and that concludes my presentation of the bill. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Representative Lewis. At this point I'm going to add a comment from the chair. If we could look at Section 1, I was in the cue for the question when you completed your remarks, so now that I've assumed the chair, I'd just like to make those remarks from the chair. I understand that we are looking at eligibility to file for a candidate that must be affiliated with the party for at least 90 days prior to filing such notice of candidacy here, and I understand that what you're doing is it's a clarification of existing law, but also it says that this is an act to amend and clarify. But, just a personal comment, but I think that 90 days is not long enough. Now I don't know if anybody else here feels the same way, if this is an opportunity to amend that, but I can briefly explain but it's something I've thought about before. I think 180 days probably be better and a year might be even better. But I will say this, I think that political parties have an important role. I think one of the roles of a political party is to allow relatively like minded people to gather around a platform that they believe in and to be able to run as a candidate representing that political party, and for that reason I have a problem with the concept that someone can change simply 90 days before, and I think it happens, and I think it often happens for purposes of convenience. We all know that there are districts or counties in the state where you can say well, you know, I really am this, but if I'm going to be elected, I'm going to have to be a republican or I'm going to have to be a democrat and so I would just open that for any discussion that anyone would like to make, but I would say it would be my preference that we would increase that time and so I would. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Chairman. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Let me take you in the order that I saw your hands. I'm going to start with Representative Conrad and Representative Stam, I'll come back to you. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I just wanted to state for the record that I agree with the chair. That 90 days really popped out to me because we all have to swear to it when we file for office, and I would like to see that changed, I think at least to 6 months, 12 months is even better. So I would support the Chair's recommendation on that or opinion. Thank you. [SPEAKER CHANGES] And I will recognize Representative Stam and I would like to see the hands again so I can have the opportunity. I'll give you the opportunity to respond, Representative Lewis. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Mr. Chairman. As the bill sponsor, my request would be, again it was the attempt simply to clarify the 8 or 9 lines it took to say the same things that we're saying in a line and a half. If the members wish to explore the substantive policy change of extending the time period, I would submit that the long session would probably be a better time to do that, mainly, largely because filing has already concluded for this cycle so any change that we make would not impact until the 2016 filing time, so I greatly respect for the chair, but at the bill sponsor I would prefer that this provision which is currently purely technical remain as such. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Representative Lewis. I will certainly take your comments under advisement. I would like to have some discussion, at least for discussion purposes only, not necessarily plan to send forth an amendment, but I would like to see what some of the members think about this. At this point I've got Representatives Stam, Harrison, Michaux, Iler and Cunningham and Speciale, and Representative Stam, you're recognized. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you. If we were going to amend it, which I don't think we should on this bill, I would want to amend it to make it shorter, and let me tell you why. It depends on where you live, but I have often been engaged in candidate recruitment across the
… state, trying to make things more competitive and trying to get people to run against in hopeless counties and things like that, and people will say “Oh, you need to talk to so-and-so. That person’s a really great conservative,” on our side. You’d have somebody say “That person’s a great liberal.” And I’ll check it out and they’re the wrong party, but there’s nobody who will run, and you get up to the deadline and why not? In other words, if they’re willing to embrace the… put that label on themselves, let them run. Let 100 flowers bloom. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Who did you quote on that? That can’t… [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mao. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I was going to say, that was Mao. That might be the first time Mao has ever been quoted in a committee. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Chairman, point of order. It may be the first time he was quoted by Representative Stam, but I would - [SPEAKER CHANGES] Maybe. I might just rule the gentleman out of order for such a thing. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Chairman? [SPEAKER CHANGES] I’ll leave the committee room for five minutes and your… Yes, Representative Stam is recognized for a mea culpa. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Actually that’s the second time I’ve quoted Mao on the subject. On the charter school lift the cap bill, “let a hundred flowers bloom”. [SPEAKER CHANGES] The Chair stands corrected. Representative Harrison. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Mr. Chair. I am in complete agreement with Representative Stam. I’ve been similarly engaged in candidate recruitment, and often what I find out is we have unaffiliated candidates who find out when they get ready to register to file for candidacy, they can’t file to run as affiliated with the Democratic Party, and we know how impossible it is to run as an unaffiliated the way our statutes are right now, so I think if folks really can’t decide within… I think I agree with Representative Stam; we ought to shorten the period and not lengthen it because I think it will just discourage candidates who might be capable and willing to run for office, and we ought to be headed in that direction. Thanks. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Well I find myself in a very odd position again. I agree with Representative Stam, and Skip, I don’t know why this is happening on this session, but I agree, this period should be - [SPEAKER CHANGES] Oh my God. [SPEAKER CHANGES] And I’m not doing mea culpa on it either. The period should be shortened because there are folks out there… and I think you have a problem, somebody’s going to take you to court on this anyway because there’s a thing called free expression in this country and I think that’s a constitutional guarantee, and if I want to change tomorrow my affiliation, I would hope that ya’ll would take me in tomorrow. I’m not going to do it but – no way – but it ought… in my book, it shouldn’t be shortened; it should be taken out completely. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Iler. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Mr. Chair. I’m going to disagree with everybody because I had a candidate move from California slightly over a year before the election, and this would be about the same thing. We filed in February, and this is based on the filing date. So if file in February, you’ve got to register sometime in November apparently, change your registration, and geographically, if you move into the jurisdiction, you also have to be there a year to run against one of us and two years to run against the Senate, so you can debate which is right, but this is about a year before that election and it’s 90 days before filing. I think it’s just about right, so that’s my two cents. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Is there…? I think staff’s… Is there a consti…? I heard you say something about a constitutional provision. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Sorry. Yes, sir. We’re having a sidebar conversation back here. For House and Senate members, there is a constitutional provision that you have to have resided in your district for one year prior to filing to run for House or Senate. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Cunningham. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Chairman? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Iler, you’re recognized for a follow-up, sir. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I don’t have my constitution in front of me, but when that person filed against me, I looked it up and it says one year before the election. Is that not correct? [SPEAKER CHANGES] That’s what she said, one year before - [SPEAKER CHANGES] But she said before filing. It’s before the election I believe, right? [SPEAKER CHANGES] One year before the… [SPEAKER CHANGES] Which would be in November. [SPEAKER CHANGES] We’re not dealing with that in this bill I don’t believe, so… [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Chairman, can I raise a different section? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Well let me do this. I’ve got Cunningham, Speciale, and then I’ll come back to the Stam and Michaux show in just a minute. Representative Cunningham. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Mr. Chair. My observation of this is that I do agree with Representative Stam, is that younger generations want to also follow in our footsteps, and sometimes they don’t have their minds made up at filing time, and it’s already hard for the next generation…
…because of other restrictions with having to finance their homes and come up here. So I wouldn’t like to see any more restrictions and opportunity for the next generation to come along and be able to step in just because they can’t determine what party affiliation because changes are coming and we’re going to see other parties coming along so we don’t need to close it in so that it’s just two parties that’s operating at this time. Thank you. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I think we do need to make a longer period of time that you have to register a particular party. We had people this election changing their affiliation so they could vote for the lesser, what they considered the lesser of two candidates in some of the primaries. That’s something that’s been going on for awhile and it went on pretty good this time. I think you should have to be, by the time the candidates finish filing whatever you are at that point that’s what it should stay until after the election. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Stam. [SPEAKER CHANGES] [??] section of the bill? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes sir. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Section two about the order of ballots, it’s random selection for non-partisan or primary but doesn’t really tell us the main issue there. That is, is it random selection for… well I’ll just give you an example. By flipping a coin you could say alphabetical first heads, alphabetical last tails. What that does for that election is give a big advantage to one person for that election but who gets the advantage is a matter of luck. The real way to do it is to say half the ballots will be in one order and half the ballots will also be in the other order then nobody has an advantage. They all have practical problems but does this provision tell the state board of election what they mean by random selection? Being Stam, that’s always the end of the alphabet so I was always prejudiced in school, called on last and things. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I’m going to let Miss Churchill answer that. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Never Representive Stam. The bill does not direct the state board how to determine what is random selection. They might be able to speak to what they’re doing today for that. [SPEAKER CHANGES] And I plan, once we get finished with member comments, I think Miss [??] going to let her speak. Representative Michaux. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I’m going back to section one again. I understand this to actually apply only to candidates. Is that correct? In other words, let me say that if I choose to change my registration to another party would that allow me to vote in that party primary? It doesn’t stop my vote does it? What this does, it just applies to candidates, I hope. [SPEAKER CHANGES] ?? going to take that. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Michaux that’s correct. This section just deals with candidate filing. There is a limitation before a primary election. There is a time limit. I’m sorry, I’ll have to check. I can’t remember if it’s 30 or 90 days. You can’t change your party affiliation immediately before a primary and vote in the party’s primary if you are registered with another party. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Alright, Representative Fisher. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you Mr. Chairman. This is just a general question about the bill as a whole. Is there anything in the PCS that replaces or changes the law or effective dates of the 2016 voter ID legislation that we passed during the long session? [SPEAKER CHANGES] No [SPEAKER CHANGES] [inaudible] [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Fisher there is one section. I believe it is section seven of the bill, does amend the voter ID provisions, however it does not change the current law. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Question staff in the chair. These are generally technical changes. Is that correct? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes sir. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So there is no substance or policy changes in this bill. Is that correct? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes Sir [SPEAKER CHANGES] Okay. Any other discussion on this [??] [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Moore. [SPEAKER CHANGES] …motion is appropriate? [SPEAKER CHANGES] It is appropriate. [SPEAKER CHANGES] [inaudible] [SPEAKER CHANGES] You’ve heard the motion for a favor report to the PCS for senate bill 403 and favorable to the original…
... in favor aye. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Aye. [SPEAKER CHANGES] All opposed, no. The ayes have it. The motion is adopted. Is there any further…? Representative Starnes. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I thought I heard you say earlier you were just going to let Ms. Track come and explain the one provision on the random selection, and I’d be anxious to hear that. [SPEAKER CHANGES] We’ll go ahead and let Ms. Track speak to it. Ms. Track, welcome to the Elections Committee. Glad to have you over. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Mr. Chair. I’m happy… I hope I get this right. In 2002, the State Board of Elections met and they determined what the process for random selection would be, and the current State Board has not changed that, and what they started off with is it’s sort of… it’s a two year cycle, so I think they started off with Z, and then it was reversed. It would go all the way back to A, the last name of the candidate, and then in two years, it would go back to A, and we’d go back and forth, reverse from forward alphabet to reverse of the alphabet every two years, and that’s been the policy since 2002 and it’s continued through this primary. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Hall. [SPEAKER CHANGES] If I could ask a question, Mr…. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Absolutely. [SPEAKER CHANGES] The process of random selection, that’s just for primary candidates, correct? [SPEAKER CHANGES] It’s for primary candidates, and it was also that same order was used for nonpartisan candidates as well. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up, Mr. Chair. [SPEAKER CHANGES] You’re recognized. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Could you explain the process for selection who goes in the ballot first for general election? [SPEAKER CHANGES] I think the statute deals with that. I think that change now is based on party, and it’s the party of the Governor will be first on the ballot. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Stam? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Just a little anecdote to show how ridiculous that system is. It’s what we told them to do, but this is… I’ll just give an example. I was the recruiter for appellate candidates for a long time, and unofficially, but I did it. So the Democratic candidate was John Arrowood, so to meet the alphabetical part of it, I found an extremely qualified district court judge with 20 years of experience, who was a woman, which gave us three or four percent advantage, and her name was Alloway, Sherry Alloway of Guilford County, because she would beat him on the alphabet. That is what we’re reduced to when you have the alphabetical thing that applies statewide for that election. All it does is make it completely unfair based upon some years the front of the alphabet, some years the back of the alphabet, but it’s completely unfair. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Lewis. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Chairman, for a moment of personal privilege. [SPEAKER CHANGES] The gentleman is recognized for a moment of personal privilege. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Members, this is contemplated by the Chairs to be the last time the House elections Committee will meet during this session or this biennium. On behalf of Representative Moore, I’d like to extend my sincerest thanks, first of all to all of you. There have been many issues that this committee has dealt with over the past two years, and many of them have been stressful, and some emotional, and I personally appreciate the dignity through which you have all conducted yourselves and the business of this committee. I think that we have done credit to the House and to the legislative process as a whole by the actions that we have shown. Also on behalf of Representative Moore and me, I would like to issue a special thank you to Nancy, Misty, Grace, Greg and Mark for all of their work in making sure that trains run on time, and of course, we would be completely lost without our central staff of Erica, Cara and Kelly, so again, thank you all for your hard work. It is very much appreciated. It has been an honor to serve as Chair of the House Elections Committee this year. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you. Any further comments or business to come before the committee? Representative Michaux. [SPEAKER CHANGES] ?? Chairman. Don’t you want to enforce the rule – 15 minute rule? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Well we have voted on our last act, and I guess you could call this last little bit kind of a social time, so if there’s no other notices or announcements for committee, we stand adjourned.