What’s Your Vote?

What's your Vote?
Man standing behind curtain in booth, low section

On March 15, we get to vote. That’s the date of the North Carolina primary, where residents weigh in on the presidential nomination and the next N.C. governor.

Here’s a quick Civics lesson on why each state holds a primary. Although NC doesn’t get the attention of other states—like New Hampshire and South Carolina—opinions in every state count.

What’s the point?

To measure public opinion and assign delegates for the presidential nomination as well as name our choice for district attorney, general assembly, judicial offices and other state positions.

For the presidential nomination, each national party has its own way of assigning delegates, but both are aimed at keeping it representative of voting results. Voters in the primary play a major role of who ends up on the November ticket.

Bring ID

North Carolina’s voter ID law is still being challenged in court, but play it safe and bring an acceptable photo ID, which includes:

• a NC driver’s license or DMV-issued ID;

• U.S. passport;

• U.S. military or veterans ID card;

• Member card of a federal or NC recognized Indian tribe; and

• An out-of-state driver’s license (but only if you vote within 90 days of when you first register to vote in N.C.)

A student ID or government employee ID is not acceptable. If you don’t have an ID, you’ll be asked to give a “reasonable impediment” for not having one, according to ncvoter.org.

For more information on polling places or ID requirements, visit ncvoter.org

Can I switch parties?

No.

North Carolina’s primary is semi-open, which means if you’re registered as a Republican and have had a major shift in opinion, you won’t be able to vote for a Democrat and vice-versa. If you’re unaffiliated, you’re not tied to any party.

You might as well vote because…

You’re picking up the tab. Primaries differ from caucuses mainly in that primaries are paid for by the state. So as a taxpayer, you’re paying for the privilege.

What’s new this year?

In addition to needing ID, North Carolina’s primary is earlier this year in an attempt to play a larger role in the presidential race. The race for governor in 2016 is expected to be one of the most-watched nationwide.

The primary ballot for governer:

Republicans: Gov. Pat McCrory (R)—running for re-election.

Charles Moss (R) – Realtor

Democrats: Roy Cooper (D) – current attorney general, former state senator and state representative

Kenneth Spaulding (D) – attorney, former state representative

Libertarian: Lon Cecil (Libertarian) – retired engineer, Vietnam war veteran

For more information on the primary candidates and the bond, visit ncsbe.gov/Elections/Election-Information.

Editor’s note: At press time, the date for the March Primary in North Carolina remains March 15. However, that date IS subject to change due a recent court ruling regarding the method in which two North Carolina districts are drawn. Pending further decision, that primary could be moved to a later date to allow for reconfiguration for those districts. Please check with the Board of Elections at ncsbe.gov for updates.

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Annie Grant

Annie Grant is a junior at North Carolina State University studying communication-public relations with a minor in journalism. She is currently an intern at Raleigh Magazine and hopes to pursue a journalism-related career. 
Annie Grant

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Annie Grant is a junior at North Carolina State University studying communication-public relations with a minor in journalism. She is currently an intern at Raleigh Magazine and hopes to pursue a journalism-related career.