State officials investigate potential election fraud in North Carolina; emergency hearing possible

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The elections board has said it will hold a hearing on the allegations on or before December 21.

The records HuffPost reviewed at the Robeson County Board of Elections on Thursday didn't contain evidence of wrongdoing.

"Which is an extreme burden on the county's residents", Stone said.

Dan McCready, the Democrat running for Congress in North Carolina's disputed 9th District, has taken back his concession amid allegations of large-scale voter fraud on behalf of the GOP candidate. Joshua Malcolm, a Robeson County attorney, is chairman of the nine-member board. He has not returned CNN's requests for comment.

A Democratic U.S. congressman on Wednesday called for an emergency hearing into claims of fraud in a North Carolina election where the state is probing alleged improper handling of ballots by political operatives.

Moody led after Election Day, but Burton wiped out his lead after absentees and provisional ballots were counted. In Robeson County, almost two-thirds of the ballots were not returned, while Bladen had 40 percent that were not sent back. "Saying the top of the ticket was adversely affected enough to alter an outcome has or may have a cascade effect".

Gerry Cohen, a former special counsel to the North Carolina General Assembly, said the state bans third parties from taking possession of ballots. But the state elections board refused to certify the results last week because of allegations of "irregularities and concerted fraudulent activities" involving mail-in ballots in the district.

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Harris may not be the only Republican to have benefited from Dowless's work, either. And with even Woodhouse conceding that a new election might be necessary, Harris's chances of occupying a seat in Congress are beginning, ever-so-gradually, to shrink. The intent was to give persons from groups unlikely to show up at the polls the chance to vote by mail. Although it is perfectly legal, it runs counter to the traditional objective and use of absentee ballots. If true, this would raise serious questions about what Republicans knew and why, if they knew anything, they failed to take action - especially since the party has claimed to be so ruthlessly obsessed with protecting the integrity of elections. If so, fewer people would be deciding the victors, particularly in the District 9 race. "So at this point in time he is not eligible for being sworn into the House".

"This has shaken us to the core", Woodhouse said, according to Sciutto.

"The House did something similar in 1985". Only 19% of absentee ballots were submitted by registered Republicans in Bladen County, one of the counties at issue, but the Republican candidate won 61% of the absentee ballot votes. It is his understanding that Pittenger's staff can be authorized to remain working until a victor is declared so constituent services can continue uninterrupted. It is possible the board could call for a new election. "Should that happen, the law would require a new election, which we will not oppose". The party just championed a voter-ID referendum approved in November, and Republican state legislators are pushing to approve language implementing the referendum during a lame-duck session, before they lose their veto-proof majorities in January.

There are indeed serious allegations of election fraud tied to North Carolina's midterm elections right now in a congressional district where results appear abnormal. The House Administration committee has "full investigative authority to determine the victor", she said.

Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), who will likely become the next Speaker of the House, said on Thursday that she will continue to watch the investigation.

As for Harris, he insists he supports an investigation into voter fraud, but that it won't change the outcome.

Freeman told CNN she opened the investigation this February based on information forwarded by the state elections board.