NCGOP leader says new election warranted based on irregularities with early vote count
RALEIGH, NC (WBTV) - The executive director of the North Carolina Republican Party said a new election is warranted in the 9th Congressional District because of questions surrounding the way in which early vote totals were tabulated in Bladen County.
Dallas Woodhouse, the senior Republican staffer in North Carolina, told WBTV the party would call for a new election based on the details of an affidavit submitted by the North Carolina Democratic Party.
The NCDP’s affidavit was from a poll assistant in Bladen County who said she witnessed precinct judges and other officials tabulate the results of the county’s one early voting site on November 3, 2018, the last day of early voting.
“On Saturday, 11/3/18, the last day of early voting, the ‘tape’ showing election results at the one-stop polling site was ran after the polls closed, and was viewed by officials at the one-stop site who were not judges. It is my understanding that this was improper,” Agnes Willis, the elections assistant, wrote in an affidavit.
The party submitted the affidavit and others to the North Carolina State Board of Elections as part of a letter from its attorney calling for a deeper investigation in later November.
On Tuesday, Woodhouse pointed to the fact that early voting totals were run before election day as an irregularity that should trigger a new election.
Woodhouse also called for the NCSBE to take control of the Bladen County Board of Elections to ensure any new election was properly administered in the county.
The NCGOP’s call for a new election comes weeks after the NCSBE voted to not certify the results of the 9th Congressional District race, where Republican Mark Harris beat Democrat Dan McCready by less than 1,000 votes.
Initially, Woodhouse called for the board to certify the results of the race and, at the time, said the party was consulting with its attorney to explore ways to force the race to be finalized.
Since then, McCready has retracted his concession and Harris has issued a statement saying he would accept a new election if the ongoing investigation found evidence of fraud that substantially altered the race.
The NCSBE has scheduled an evidentiary hearing to be held by December 21, 2018 to hear evidence of voting irregularities in Bladen and Robeson County.
That timeline may be pushed back, based on a letter sent by NCSBE Chairman Joshua Malcolm late Monday to a three-judge panel overseeing a case regarding the future of how the elections board is made up.
The NCDP is scheduled to hold a press conference on Tuesday at 1:30 p.m.
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