Votes Not Counted: Lauren's Story

Each post in SCSJ’s “Votes Not Counted” series tells the story of a person qualified to vote before the passage of North Carolina’s Monster Voter Suppression Law, whose ballot was unjustly denied this year. Below is Lauren’s story. If you know another eligible voter whose vote has been denied, please email
Lauren is a 26-year-old marketing professional whose vote was not counted in November’s election because of the voter suppression law (H.B. 589) that eliminated same-day registration.  Despite being a consistent voter in the past, Lauren was unable to support her candidates of choice in this election.
Lauren previously lived in Pitt County and voted there regularly in municipal, primary, and general elections.  She moved from Pitt County to Wake County and had every intention of voting in November’s election.  She knew that there had been some changes to North Carolina’s election laws but did not think they affected her ability to vote because she had been previously registered in Pitt County.  However, on November 1st, Lauren would find out that her vote would not be counted.
During the early voting period, Lauren went to the Lake Lynn Community Center in Raleigh to vote.  Since Lauren had moved from Pitt County to Wake County more than 30 days before the election, Lauren was told that she needed to re-register to vote and her ballot for this election would not be counted.  Lauren therefore was only able to register for future elections and while she did cast a provisional ballot, it was not ultimately counted.  Had the General Assembly not repealed same-day registration, Lauren would have been able to update her registration and have her vote counted.
Lauren is frustrated how the voter suppression law negatively impacts real voters like her.  As a political science major in college, Lauren is knowledgeable about the political process.  Lauren uses voting as a way to exercise her own political and social rights, and to support the rights of others.  Lauren feels discouraged after being disenfranchised in this year’s election.  Lauren has agreed to share her story so the citizens of North Carolina understand that these changes to elections laws negatively impact real people, including those like Lauren who really care about the right to vote.