NCGOP, Clay County Republican Party Chair, and RNC File Lawsuit Against the North Carolina State Board of Elections
September 12, 2022
For Immediate Release
RALEIGH, N.C. – Late last week, the North Carolina Republican Party, in conjunction with the Republican National Committee and Clay County GOP Chair Barbara Deas, filed a lawsuit in Wake County against the North Carolina State Board of Elections over the Board’s unconstitutional efforts to restrict poll observers and extend the absentee by-mail deadline. See the full complaint here.
Once again, the State Board of Elections has usurped the legislature’s authority to make laws that govern our elections, demonstrating the Board’s allegiance to their partisan agendas over the Rule of Law.
Election integrity is consistently ranked by North Carolina voters as a top priority, and our electoral system and officials should always aim to provide and promote transparency. The N.C. State Board of Elections, a body whose very existence is predicated on the goals of transparency and integrity, has instead gone rogue in an effort to restrict transparency.
Much like they did in 2020, the State Board has attempted to unilaterally push back the absentee ballot deadline. That deadline is set by law as passed by the duly elected members of our state legislature. The Board has no authority to change it.
Further, poll observers play a critical role in ensuring the integrity of elections, providing much needed oversight from the citizens. This State Board has continued to do everything in its power to restrict the rights of observers and to make it more difficult for the Republican Party to shift observers in every county. The Rules Review Commission shut down such an effort by the Board just a few of weeks ago and also shut down so-called “emergency rules” the Board attempted to pass in 2020. However, the State Board remains undeterred and is now explicitly directing county boards to violate the law by restricting at-large poll observers to 4-hour shifts, thereby cutting their flexibility and making it tremendously more difficult for the county parties to have eyes on all voting sites.
“Voters in North Carolina deserve to have confidence in our elections, but when the State Board continues to bend, change, or otherwise flatly ignore the law that undermines the public trust,” said NCGOP Chairman Michael Whatley. “Frankly, we’re not going to stand for it. That’s why we have partnered with the RNC to reign in this out of control Board.”
This lawsuit is but one of the many actions the N.C. Republican Party has taken at the state and national level to protect election integrity. Republicans will not allow the hijacking of our elections by a group of unelected partisans who have proven more loyal to their political party than to the laws that govern them..
The NCGOP will continue its efforts to ensure transparency, integrity, and accountability within our election systems on behalf of the voters of North Carolina.