- Aug 25, 2016
- Reaction score
- Port Hadlock, WA
- Political Leaning
- Slightly Liberal
Amid Fraud Allegations, State Election Board Won't Certify North Carolina House Race
North Carolina Republican Mark Harris drew a number during the office room lottery on Capitol Hill in Washington on Friday. He leads Democrat Dan McCready by more than 900 votes but the state election board delayed certifying his electoral victory.
Enough confusion has clouded a North Carolina congressional race that the state's Board of Elections has announced a delay to certifying Republican Mark Harris' electoral victory over Democrat Dan McCready in the state's 9th district due to "claims of irregularities and fraudulent activities."
In a 7-2 vote on Friday, the board said it will instead hold a public hearing by Dec. 21 "to assure that the election is determined without taint of fraud or corruption and without irregularities that may have changed the result." It follows a unanimous vote earlier this week to postpone election certification results.
The Friday vote fueled fresh uncertainty about the outcome of the race, and raised the possibility that a second election could ultimately be called. The two candidates are separated by 905 votes out of more than 280,000 cast, according to unofficial election results. The Associated Press originally called the race for Harris, but revoked that projection on Friday.
In a letter sent to the board of elections, North Carolina's Democratic Party made claims of wrongdoing. The Washington Post reported that the State Board of Elections and Ethics Enforcement has already collected at least six sworn statements from voters in Bladen County alleging that people came to their doors and urged them to hand over their absentee ballots.
In Bladen and Robeson counties, some 3,400 absentee ballots failed to be mailed back to election officials, according to NPR member station WFAE.
That equates to 40 percent of mail-in ballots in Bladen County and 64 percent in Robeson, according to a News & Observer analysis.
Partisan Election Officials Are 'Inherently Unfair' But Probably Here To Stay
Gerry Cohen, an elections expert in North Carolina, told WFAE that when people go through the process to request an absentee ballot, they often return them. "The return rate is usually about 80 or 90 percent," he said.
November's unreturned ballots were disproportionately associated with minorities, according to the News & Observer:
More than 40 percent of the ballots requested by African Americans and more than 60 percent of those requested by American Indians did not make it back to elections officials. For white voters, that figure was just 17 percent.
In one affidavit received by the board, a woman named Emma Shipman said she was visited by a person who claimed to be gathering absentee ballots, WFAE reported.
Shipman said she filled out the form while the woman waited outside. "She took the ballot and put it in an envelope and never sealed it or asked me to sign it. Then she left."
Collecting absentee ballots by a third party is illegal. But, Shipman said, "Because of the way she presented herself, I thought she was legitimate."
Tell us again how it's the Democrats doing voter fraud?:roll: