Democrat McCready takes back concession in disputed NC congressional race

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House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi says the chamber could take the "extraordinary step" of calling for a new election in a North Carolina congressional district if the victor is unclear amid allegations of voter fraud. For almost the past decade, Dowless has been hired by state and local candidates to "get out the vote", and his past efforts have also been marked with absentee mail-in ballot irregularities.

State investigators can order a new election if "irregularities or improprieties occurred to such an extent that they taint the results of the entire election and cast doubt on its fairness". "Dan Bishop (R-Mecklenburg), Tommy Tucker (R-Union), and Paul Newton (R-Cabarrus) today called on Governor Roy Cooper to establish an independent, bipartisan task force to investigate absentee ballot irregularities spanning multiple election cycles, including the 2016 gubernatorial election".

If the results are certified when the board meets December 21, the loser can contest the result within 30 days.

One month after the midterms, a congressional race in North Carolina is still undecided.

The announcement came Thursday as allegations of absentee ballot tampering and other interference in Bladen and Robeson counties appeared to help Republican Mark Harris, who led by just 905 votes in unofficial returns, The Charlotte Observer reported.

The board also released envelopes of 184 absentee ballots in Bladen County they received back as return to sender mail because it was undeliverable.

The board on Friday refused to certify the race, and voted to hold a hearing by December 21 on the evidence it finds on the alleged scheme.

Several states have tried to limit ballot harvesting by restricting who can turn in another person's ballot. The reasoning behind the law is that it limits others from influencing a homebound voter's choices. But of the voters who turned in the absentee ballots, only 19 percent were registered Republicans.

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Attention pivoted to a turnout operation run by Dowless, who was working for Red Dome Group, a company hired by the Harris campaign.

The Arizona law making it a felony in most cases to collect an early ballot was challenged in federal court before the 2016 election, and blocked by an appeals court.

Under the current nine-member board, it would take five members to call for a new 9th District election, which wouldn't happen until early next year.

Moments ago, CNN's Jim Sciutto reported that Dallas Woodhouse, the Executive Director of the North Carolina Republican Party since 2015, is now open to a new election in North Carolina's 9th Congressional district. If the board hasn't certified the results by January 3, when the new Congress is sworn in, any member can object to Harris being seated. Harris defeated incumbent Rep. Robert Pittenger in that primary and won a majority of the mail-in vote in Bladen County.

Amid the developments, U.S. House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi said Thursday the House "retains the right to decide who is seated" and could take the "extraordinary step" of calling for a new election if the victor isn't clear.

Incoming Majority Leader Rep. Steny Hoyer of Maryland said Tuesday that a "very substantial question" about fraud exists and hopes state officials "get to the bottom" of the controversy. The law targeted "African-Americans with nearly surgical precision", said the 2016 ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals' Fourth Circuit.

The losing candidate in the state's final race count can contest the outcome within 30 days by filing a notice with the U.S. House clerk, according to a report by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service. "[But] if voter fraud was committed by Republicans, then yes, that would be ironic", said Carter Wrenn, a Republican consultant based in North Carolina who is not affiliated with either campaign.

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