ACLU calls voter ID law 'discriminatory,' files motion in opposition

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- The American Civil Liberties Union of South Carolina has asked a federal court to block South Carolina's voter ID law.

In a press release on the ACLU's website, the law is described as "discriminatory."

"South Carolina's voter ID law is a prime example why the Voting Rights Act is necessary and relevant today," said Nancy Abudu, senior staff attorney with the ACLU Voting Rights Project. "If it were not for the protections that the Voting Rights Act provides, South Carolina and many other states would enact discriminatory voting laws that make it harder for minorities to vote."

The ACLU has filed a motion with the U.S. District Court in attempt to intervene in the case, but in order to do so, the motion must be granted by the court.

The ACLU says it has already had similar motions granted in other states, including Georgia and North Carolina. It's all in attempt, the ACLU says, to protect voters who will not have what is described as an "acceptable for of ID" according to the new law.

Specifically, the motion was filed on behalf of three registered voters, including two African-Americans and the Family Unit, a Sumter-based non-profit organization that helps people register to vote. As a result of the law, the ACLU says the organization would have to devote more of its limited resources to helping people obtain ID.

"Despite the lack of proof that voter impersonation is a problem in South Carolina, and despite evidence that African-Americans are less likely than whites to possess the forms of ID that the law requires, state officials have chosen to defend this unnecessary and unfair law," said Victoria Middleton, executive director of the ACLU of South Carolina. "Our elected officials should make it easier for South Carolinians to exercise their right to vote, not put more barriers in their way."

The ACLU has also sent comment letters opposing a voter ID law in Texas and filed a lawsuit against Wisconsin's voter ID law.

To view the motion filed by the ACLU against South Carolina's voter ID law, click here.