NC GOP Leader Says New Voting Laws Hurts ‘lazy college kids’ and ‘lazy blacks’

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GOP Precinct Chair Don Yelton

Republican Leader’s Remarks Show New Voting Laws Are Designed to Disenfranchise Youth and People of Color

Durham, NC – On Comedy Central’s The Daily Show with Jon Stewart this past Wednesday, Don Yelton of the Buncombe County GOP clearly stated that our state’s new voting laws were passed not to prevent voter fraud, but instead to disenfranchise young voters and people of color.  In the interview, Yelton said the new voting laws – which include eliminating same-day registration and requiring a state ID to vote – would “kick Democrats in the butt.”  When asked if it might make it more difficult for some students to vote, he remarked: “If it hurts a bunch of college kids that’s too lazy to get up off their [rears] and get a photo ID, so be it.”  He showed the same sympathy for voters of color, saying, “If it hurts a bunch of lazy Blacks that want the government to give them everything, so be it.”

Clearly, these new laws are designed to limit the voting power of youth and people of color, part of the new emerging American electorate.  Mr. Yelton’s remarks cannot be any more clear or more offensive.  He doesn’t want students to vote, and he doesn’t want people of color to vote.  He’s glad that it is harder for people in our state to vote, because he doesn’t think everyone should have a say in our government.

With the voting rights of so many blatantly under attack, we have to make a stand and defend everyone’s right to the ballot box.  This is what the NC Vote Defenders are doing this election season, and we need your help.  Vote Defenders will be poll monitoring in in Boone and Charlotte on November 5, but we need more people who are committed to defending and protecting the voice, agency, and vote of EVERY North Carolinians in order to be successful.

Trainings are coming up for Vote Defenders in both these cities – in Boone on Tuesday, Oct 29, and in Charlotte on Saturday, Nov 2.  You must RSVP in order to attend.

Boone Vote Defender training will be next Tuesday, October 29 from 6-8.  Charlotte Vote Defender Training will be Saturday, November 2 from 2-4.  Please sign up on our website, and stand against these attacks on voting rights.  We all deserve to have a say in our government. Don’t let them get away with these attempts to silence your voice.

Volunteer to become a Vote Defender so that you can support the rights of all North Carolinians’ to the ballot box.  Vote Defenders will monitor polls on Election Day for voter suppression.  Boone Vote Defender training is coming up on Tuesday, October 29, from 6-8.  Charlotte training will take place on Saturday, November 2, from 2-4.

We all deserve to have a say in our government.  Stand with those who will be disenfranchised, and say no to the new Jim Crow.

Register Now for the Elizabeth City Vote Defender Training

The Elizabeth City Vote Defender training will be held on Monday, October 7.  We’re really excited about the great group of activists already signed up, but we need more vote defenders to make sure there isn’t student voter suppression on Election Day this year.  At the training, volunteers will be taught how to document incidents of voter suppression and how to help voters advocate for their right to the ballot box.

The training will be Monday night at ______.

Key Elections Approaching in Boone and Charlotte, So Sign Up to be a Vote Defender


One Election Day Down, One To Go

November 5 is Election Day in Watauga and Mecklenberg counties, and the NC Vote Defenders will once again be at the polls to stand against voter suppression.  Just as we did in Raleigh and Elizabeth City on October 8, we will be at various precincts in Boone and Charlotte educating voters on new voting laws, and documenting voter repression and advocating for everyone’s right to the ballot box.

We Need Your Help

We need volunteers to be Vote Defenders and monitor these polls.  If you stand for student voting rights, for equality in our state, and for the belief that voting laws shouldn’t throw up bureaucratic barriers to the ballot box, but should instead encourage voter participation, then please volunteer here!

Watauga County Vote Defender training will be held on the evening of Monday, October 14, on the campus of Appalachian State University.  Charlotte Vote Defender Training will be on Saturday, November 2 from 3-5.  Stand with the students, and stand for voting laws that encourage people to vote, instead of seeking to silence them.


NC Vote Defenders in the press!

Elizabeth City’s Daily Advance Covers Vote Defender Poll Monitoring


Vote Defender Bryan Perlmutter performs poll monitoring in Elizabeth City.

The work of our Vote Defender volunteers on Tuesday in Pasquotank County was covered by the Daily Advance.  Check us out at the Daily Advance’s website here!

If you like what you read and want to get involved, sign the Call to Action to support the cause, or volunteer yourself to become a Vote Defender.  We’ll at the polls on November 5th in both Charlotte and Boone.

Vote Defenders At the Polls: Election Day Poll Monitoring Educates Local Voters About Changing Voting Laws

NC Vote Defenders’ Organizing Fellow Lela Ali talks to the press outside of Aversboro Elementary School.


On Tuesday, Election Day, Vote Defenders were stationed at multiple polls around Wake and Pasquotank County. These volunteers handed out information on changing voting laws to make sure that local voters knew about their basic voting rights. They also helped monitor for any instances of voter suppression or intimidation.


Bryan Perlmutter, the NC Vote Defender’s Program Director, waits for voters to arrive at a precinct in Elizabeth City.
Vote Defender volunteers Molly McDonough and Mary-Kylie Cranford monitoring a precinct in Wake County.
Simone Boney got to the polls early to help make sure voters knew all of their voting rights.

While most new voting laws will not go into effect until 2014 (and 2016 for the new Voter ID law), there was still a lot of confusion over them this year. People showed up with their IDs just in case, and asked questions about when certain voting laws would start being enforced.  Vote Defenders happily answered their questions and alleviated confusion over the new voting regulations.

We’ll be at it again on November 5 in Charlotte and Boone, and we can’t wait!


They’re Ready: Wake County Vote Defender Training Prepares Volunteers for Poll Monitoring on Election Day

Bryan Perlmutter and Lela Ali lead the NC Vote Defender Training

On the night of Thursday October 3, local volunteers gathered in a classroom on the campus of NC State.  These concerned citizens joined the NC Vote Defenders at the Wake County Vote Defender training, showing their commitment to help ensure that all North Carolinians’ can exercise their right to the ballot box.

At the training, local volunteers learned about the suppressive new voting laws that have been passed in North Carolina.  Specifically, they learned when these laws will go into effect, which will help them educate voters at the polls, as well as advocate for anyone who encounters voter suppression.  Volunteers also learned how to document instances of voter suppression and how to seek remedy for these instances so that everyone who wants to vote, can vote.

Bryan Perlmutter role playing to show Vote Defenders what different problems voters may run into at the polls.
Bryan Perlmutter role playing to show Vote Defenders what different problems voters may run into at the polls.

We’re very excited to see them all at the polls on Tuesday, doing their good and necessary work to make sure everyone in Wake County can vote in their elections on October 8th.

But Wake County’s election is not the only election coming up on October 8th.  Elizabeth City, which has already been the site of voter suppression this year, will also be holding local elections next Tuesday.  The Vote Defenders will be active there on Election Day, and we need your help!

If you would like to volunteer to be a poll monitor and vote defender in Elizabeth City, we will be holding our Elizabeth City Vote Defender training next Monday, October 7th.

Sign up here and stand with the NC Vote Defenders for equality and justice in North Carolina!