RALEIGH – Democrats appointed by Governor Roy Cooper were taking advantage of the COVID-19 crisis to push for emergency powers to relax voting rules that ensure vote integrity and remove security rules that would make elections even more vulnerable to fraud. The move needed the approval of the Rules Review Commission, however, and they’re answer was a big, fat, ‘NO!’
From the Carolina Journal:
“The N.C. Rules Review Commission unanimously voted to reject a State Board of Elections’ request for emergency powers on Thursday, May 21. Commissioners said the requested temporary rule changes were ambiguous, unnecessary, and outside of the board’s statutory authority.
The board said it needed more flexibility to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. The changes would have allowed the board to delay hearings for candidate challenges and election protest appeals, change some election dates, and move the deadline for voter registration. The powers would also allow the board to shift deadlines to complete and report the sorting for ballots by precinct, as well as deadlines to accept absentee by-mail ballots. The text specifically banned the board from changing the redistricting process. […]
“The agency appears to be subverting the legislative process,” said Jay DeLancy, co-founder of the Voter Integrity Project of N.C. “[This] is practically a carbon copy of their legislative agenda.”
Some commissioners agreed with DeLancy.
“There is a gross misunderstanding of what the RRC purview is … or it is a devious stunt by the Board of Elections,” said Commissioner Tommy Tucker. “I’m concerned this is an end run around the public, the General Assembly, and the courts.” […]”
This is standard fare for Democratic leaders in North Carolina it seems.
Can’t win a majority? Accuse the other side of racist gerrymandering. Sue until liberla judges abuse the bench to make it blue. Can’t pass legislation? Sue again, the liberal judge will make it law. Can’t change election rules? Just do it when everyone is distracted by a literal pandemic panic.
Luckily the members of the Rules Review Commission saw the effort for what it was, and rejected it out of hand. However, with as deep and protracted as the current crisis is and will become, this is only one of a wave of naked power grabs the Democrats will attempt.
Read more about the vote, and the commission’s reaction here.