GOP Officials Warned About Potential North Carolina Fraud After Primary

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McCready's move comes after the head of the state Republican Party said he would support a new election in the state's unresolved congressional race if an investigation shows that wrongdoing swayed its outcome. That's one reason the GOP would be better off if the state held a new election for NC-09 and resolved the defects on their own. "And I call on Mark Harris to tell us exactly what he knew and when he knew it".

But on Thursday, amid mounting evidence of electoral fraud in Harris's race, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said that Congress might not seat the Republican with the rest of his class. Hours later, the Washington Post reported that Robert Pittenger, the Republican incumbent Harris defeated in May, had noticed irregularities in the primary results and notified GOP officials at the time.

Dallas Woodhouse, the state party's executive director, initially said he hadn't been alerted to the potential of absentee fraud by a Harris-hired consultant, Leslie McCrae Dowless, before admitting that he may have just shrugged them off in the heat of the campaign fight.

Dowless earned more than $23,000 working on six campaigns dating back to 2010, and in most of those races, Dowless' candidates received a disproportionately higher percentage of absentee votes in Bladen County. The Board will hold a hearing on December 21 to investigate "claims of irregularities and fraudulent activities". "I think we have to let the board of elections come show their hand if they can show that this conceivably could have flipped the race in that neighborhood, we will absolutely support a new election".

"The House Administration Committee will have full investigative authority to determine the victor of the election", Pelosi added. The state Elections Board, with Malcolm raising questions, did not certify the results.

There are also claims that incomplete ballots were collected and then filled out later, Cohen said. According to the Observer, Dowless paid people - sometimes high on opioids - in cash to collect and divert absentee ballots, an illegal action under North Carolina election laws.

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The revelations and ensuing national news coverage have put pressure on Republicans and attracted attention from top Democrats.

Republican Mark Harris leads Democrat Dan McCready by about 900 votes, according to unofficial results in the 9th District.

He also said it's unlikely anyone will be seated to represent North Carolina's 9th District when the new House is sworn in on January 3.

In the midst of all of this, the Democrat who narrowly lost the race, former Marine veteran and renewables investor Dan McCready, has announced he is retracting his concession and vowed to fight for answers.

But last week, questions began about the absentee ballots in Bladen and neighboring Robeson County.

"We're not ready to call for a new election yet", Woodhouse added, but that's still a long way from Woodhouse's position nine days ago.

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