Cooper names NC governor transition team

Does North Carolina have a new governor? Technically, no, but Democrat Roy Cooper is moving ahead as if he has the job.

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Attorney General Roy Cooper announced his transition team as he prepares to move into the Governor's mansion January 1, but the current governor is not convinced voters have given him an eviction notice. 

The NC GOP and Gov. Pat McCrory's campaign has filed numerous protests across the state, alleging voter fraud and equipment failure. Fifty of the state's 100 counties, including Mecklenburg, have investigated these claims. So far, one has resulted in a further review by state officials as they investigate possible fraudulent absentee ballots in Bladen County.

These protests have resulted in many counties failing to meet last Friday's canvassing deadline. Mecklenburg County's Board of Elections convened Monday night to canvas its votes and close out election 2016.

"Hopefully we can finish up a tally and get a final result," said Michael Dickerson, director of the Mecklenburg County Board of Elections. 

The board will ensure that provisional ballots are counted. They have requested data from the NC Board of Elections and DMV to verify registrations

"I think it was about 3,800 of those that we had to go through, and we did our due diligence on our part to see if they were registered," he explained.

Dickerson says they began the process Friday but faced a protest from the NC GOP.

"They were questioning three machines that failed on Election Day," he said. "They were good and found nothing wrong with what we did and how we did it."

Dickerson says the board will work as long as it takes Monday night to certify the election results.

"We want to make sure we have all the votes in, that we tallied all the votes that is supposed to be tallied so that everyone got their vote," he said.

However, Gov. McCrory's campaign questions the validity of some of the votes counted so far.

McCrory's campaign manager, Ricky Diaz, released this statement: 

"Why is Roy Cooper so insistent on circumventing the electoral process and counting the votes of dead people and felons? It may be because he needs those fraudulent votes to count in order to win. Instead of insulting North Carolina voters, we intend to let the process work as it should to ensure that every legal vote is counted properly."

In the meantime, Democrats say it is time for Gov. McCrory to bow out.

"Gov. McCrory is from here, we know people have mixed feelings, I would never want to kick a man when he's down," said NC Rep. Tricia Cotham (D-Matthews).  "I think it is very important for our governor to be a statesman right now. That's something we do really well in North Carolina and concede that he lost this race so the next administration can plan and move forward." 

Cooper's campaign also released a statement: 

"This race is over. There is no path to victory for Governor McCrory. While the McCrory campaign’s false accusations have been rejected, Roy Cooper’s lead has grown to nearly 8,000 votes. It’s time for Governor McCrory to respect the will of the voters and stop the desperate attempts to undermine the results of this election."

Copyright 2016 WCNC


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