RALEIGH, NC (WBTV) - Democrat Rachel Hunt was seated in the North Carolina House of Representatives despite a last-minute effort by a conservative group to bar her from being sworn in.
Hunt was sworn in along with the other members of the House in a ceremonial session held at noon on Wednesday.
Hunt, who is the daughter of former Governor Jim Hunt, beat longtime Republican incumbent Robert Brawley by 68 votes in the November election.
The North Carolina Values Coalition filed a petition with the House Clerk on Tuesday outlining voting irregularities they found in HD-103. The irregularities centered around absentee ballots cast in the district.
The coalition said their findings suggest the narrow margin of the race could have been changed had the suspicious ballots been investigated.
The race was certified by the Mecklenburg County Board of Elections and the NC State Board of Elections.
But WBTV confirmed late Tuesday that the county BOE never sent absentee ballots with inconsistencies, as state board investigators requested for the 2018 election.
After being sworn in on Wednesday, Hunt would not directly answer whether she thought the allegations brought by the NC Values Coalition should be investigated further.
“I would support whatever’s appropriate. I have complete faith and confidence in our State Board of Elections and in my county Board of Elections,” Hunt said when asked whether she thought the allegations should be investigated.
“But do you think these allegations are something that need to be looked at and investigated?” a WBTV reporter asked again.
“I’m going to leave that up to people who are looking at it right now and who know more about the specifics than I do,” Hunt responded.
“So you don’t think it should be investigated or yes?” a WBTV reporter asekd.
“I’m not going to say one way or the other about that because I’m not the person who knows most about what the allegations are,” Hunt said.