GOP Precinct Chairman Says Voter ID Will Hurt “Lazy Blacks,” Then Resigns

By David Weigel
169643319 Daily Show correspondent Aasif Mandvi is one suave scooper.

Interloping out-of-state reporters have been irritating North Carolina all year, by visiting the state to write about the effects of its new, Republican-backed voter laws. The Daily Show sent Aasif Mandvi down to do a segment similar to the ones Rachel Maddow had been doing, focusing on one of the liberal cities (Asheville) where young blacks and college students expected to be hurt by the law. Mandvi sat down with Don Yelton, a GOP precinct chairman who’d tangled with his own party before. A perfect source who revealed himself to be better than perfect.

Yelton has resigned, after one short day of trying to spin away his comments. They were, according to the Buncombe County party chairman, “offensive, uniformed and unacceptable of any member within the Republican Party.”

They’ll also have a long tail. I covered the 2012 legal battle over Pennsylvania’s new voter ID law. One of the stronger pieces of evidence for the plaintiffs was House Majority Leader Mike Turzai’s on-camera admission that the law would “allow Gov. Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania.” The most damaging thing Yelton says in this tape isn’t the line about “lazy blacks,” but the line about how the law will be de facto bad for Democrats.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. You can reach him at, or tweet at him @daveweigel.