A New Election Might Be the Only Way Forward in North Carolina

Bessie Dean
December 8, 2018

Highlighting the accusations in the rural North Carolina congressional district, Colbert told his viewers that Harris is a Baptist minister.

Mark Harris, the Republican candidate who beat Democrat Dan McCready by 905 votes, paid Red Dome Group $428,911 for campaign consulting and services, the second-most he spent on an individual consultant, through September 30.

Earlier Thursday, North Carolina Republican Party executive director Dallas Woodhouse told CNN he would support a new election if the elections board proves allegations of fraud are true and impacted the outcome of the race. The board could ultimately order another election. Harris defeated incumbent Rep. Robert Pittenger in that primary and won a majority of the mail-in vote in Bladen County. GOP officials have denied the report. He added that the State Board of Elections should "act immediately" and certify the results because "anything else is a disservice to the people of the Ninth District".

Multiple sworn affidavits, interviews of ballot harvesters, and the freakish numbers for absentee election returns suggest that GOP candidate Mark Harris, with the help of local strategist Leslie McCrae Dowless, Jr., paid people to visit elderly black voters in Bladen and Robeson Counties, take their absentee ballots and deliver them to the campaign - and over 1,000 ballots may have been destroyed, more than the 905-vote margin by which Harris won the race.

"What we know is the people down in Bladen County are scoundrels". Until yesterday, the focus on illegal activity involved just the collection of ballots, more so than the high non-return rates from the counties Dowless worked on behalf of the Mark Harris campaign. One worker came forward, saying that she had been hired to pick up ballots for McCrae Dowless and that those ballots were never mailed.

"All Republicans across the state are horrified by this".

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Harris may not be the only Republican to have benefited from Dowless's work, either.

CONCESSION WITHDRAWN! Democratic congressional candidate Dan McCready trails Republican Mark Harris by more than 900 votes, but there have been serious allegations of fraud dealing with absentee ballots. The employees who worked for Dowless in Bladen County also served as witnesses for an unusually high number of voters.

Top N.C. Republican officials said Thursday they could support a new election in the 9th congressional district only if the board uncovers "an overwhelming amount of evidence" that fraud changed the outcome of the vote or that "there is a substantial likelihood that it could have been (changed)".

Voting restrictions became the central issue in Georgia's close gubernatorial race between Democrat Stacey Abrams and Secretary of State Brian Kemp, with Abrams accusing Kemp of abusing his office to cement his party's hold on power.

Two years ago, North Carolina Republican Pat McCrory refused for a month to concede he'd lost his gubernatorial re-election race, claiming to be a victim of the kind of massive fraud by voters that his party had warned about for years.

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