A planned hearing digging into allegations of possible ballot fraud in the country’s last undecided congressional race was scrapped Wednesday, with North Carolina’s governor blaming Republicans for not backing his plan to temporarily recreate the disbanded state elections board.
Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper said he won’t try to ram ahead with a Democrats-only elections board. State elections staffers then announced the Jan. 11 meeting was postponed due to the lack of a board authorized to subpoena witnesses and hold hearings.
Cooper contended he had the authority to reshape a three-Democrat, two-Republican elections board to hold the hearing into an unusually large number of unused absentee ballots and a large advantage in absentees favoring Republican Mark Harris in two of the 9th congressional district’s rural counties.
The elections board was dissolved on Friday by state judges who in October declared its form unconstitutional. They ordered a return to governors appointing most members as they have done for a century. A revamped board takes effect Jan. 31.