Republicans tried to get away with voter fraud in North Carolina, but their scheme has completely backfired. The elections board elected not to certify the results, citing “claims of irregularities and fraudulent activities related to absentee by-mail voting.” But it gets worse. Democrats just announced they won’t seat Republican Mark Harris until North Carolina fraud allegations are resolved.
Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), who will be majority leader in the next Congress, warned on Tuesday that Democrats will not seat Harris if allegations of election fraud carry over to next year, when Democrats take control of the lower chamber, The Hill reports.
Hoyer said he’s hopeful that North Carolina officials will settle the controversy surrounding Harris, who has a slim lead over Democrat Dan McCready in a contest dogged by allegations of election fraud.
But if the issue remains under a cloud of contention — or if local officials certify Harris in a way viewed as partisan — Democrats will investigate the matter themselves before seating Harris, Hoyer said.
“The allegation is of serious fraudulent activity on behalf of the Republican administrator — one or more — dealing with primarily absentee ballots. … So there’s a very substantial question,” Hoyer told reporters during a press briefing in the Capitol.
“The House … has the authority over the propriety of the election. This is a very substantial question [and] it ought to be resolved before we seat any member,” he said.
Hoyer said he intends to talk to Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.), who will likely be chairwoman of the House Administration Committee next year, about how to approach the fraud allegations in the district, but he was clear that if the controversy persists into next year, Democrats will not seat Harris.
“If there is what appears to be a very substantial question on the integrity of the election, clearly we would oppose Mr. Harris’s being seated until that is resolved,” he said.