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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, December 2, 2016 - Volume 44 Issue 49
North Carolina gubernatorial race:

Democrat now 10,000 votes ahead, margin blocks recount
Section One
ALL STORIES
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North Carolina gubernatorial race:

Democrat now 10,000 votes ahead, margin blocks recount

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

As of November 29, Democratic challenger Roy Cooper was more than 10,000 votes ahead of Republican incumbent Pat McCrory in the race for North Carolina governor, blocking McCrory from asking for a recount.

Cooper led by a narrow margin since Election Day, despite GOP-sponsored voter suppression measures restricting the number of polling places and requiring photo ID.

McCrory became notorious for sponsoring a draconian anti-LGBT bill that repealed local nondiscrimination ordinances and barred Transgender people from gender-appropriate restrooms. As North Carolina's attorney general, Cooper refused to defend the law in court.

McCrory has challenged more than 90,000 ballots in Durham County, where Cooper ran up a substantial lead, alleging voting 'irregularities.' As Cooper's lead widened, McCrory added challenges in a number of other counties, but local voting officials strenuously denied any problems.

McCrory also said he would seek a statewide recount, but Cooper is now far enough ahead in the ballot count that state officials are not obligated to honor his request.

On November 30, the State Board of Elections took up a request filed by a Republican attorney for a hand recount of all North Carolina ballots, and it ordered a recount in a dozen precincts in Durham County.

The Durham elections board already rejected the attorney's previous request, but McCrory's campaign emailed supporters urging them to contact the state board and say they want the recount.

North Carolina law does allow county election officers to order recounts on their own. Cooper's campaign cited their widening margin of victory to call once again on McCrory to concede.

McCrory told the Associated Press on November 30 that he is 'going to respect the process and respect the results' and expects others to do the same.

Meanwhile, the Charlotte Observer denounced McCrory's demands as a political ploy to support future voter suppression efforts.

'[McCrory] and his fellow scaremongers have disrespected democracy and honest election workers of both parties while slandering innocent North Carolina citizens by recklessly accusing them of felonies,' the newspaper wrote in an editorial.

'In doing so, he has further tarnished his already-stained legacy and will be remembered always for the lack of grace he showed in what may be his final election.

'His behavior is so incomprehensible - he fights in the face of virtually certain defeat - that it suggests there is an alternative goal. Like President-elect Donald Trump's, McCrory's creation of phantom election cheats tills the ground for future voter suppression efforts. Flimsy though the allegations are, they are all legislative leaders would need in their efforts to justify politically motivated restrictions.'

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Trump appoints crocodiles to Treasury and Commerce departments

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North Carolina gubernatorial race:

Democrat now 10,000 votes ahead, margin blocks recount

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