NEW HANOVER COUNTY — At the completion of Tuesday’s canvass, the unofficial victors – Woody White (R), Jonathan Barfield (D) and Patrica Kusek (R) taking first, second, and third respectively – have been confirmed. But a recount is legally on the table for other candidates.
Between the Election Day and the final count on Tuesday, Barfield edged ahead of Kusek by 53 votes. The tight margin between Barfield and Kusek also includes Derrick Hickey (R) and Julia Boseman (D). Hickey trails Kusek by 440 votes. Boseman trails more closely by 364 votes. Both candidates are legally entitled to request a recount because the difference between winner’s and losers tally is within 1 percent of the candidate’s combined vote total.
Port City Daily is waiting to hear back from both campaigns, who have until tomorrow at the close of the business day to file such a request.
New Hanover is one of over 50 counties in North Carolina where the McCrory campaign and other Republicans have filed protests. Many counties will not complete their canvasses until later this afternoon or evening.
Governor Pat McCrory has preemptively filed a formal request for a statewide recount, which was delivered this morning to the State Board of Elections. Acknowledging that his request was “prior to the full completion of each of the county canvasses across North Carolina,” McCrory’s statement nevertheless stated: “With serious concerns of potential voter fraud emerging across the state, it is becoming apparent that a thorough recount is one way the people of North Carolina can have confidence in the results, process and system.”
Many canvasses, including Brunswick County, will hold hearings on election protests to determine whether invalid ballots were cast. Those hearings will have to be concluded before final canvasses are completed. Only then will McCrory’s request for a recount be actionable, and only if the margin between the governor and Attorney General Roy Cooper remains under 10,000 votes.
McCrory’s protest – delivered by proxy through the New Hanover County Republican Party – was rejected by the New Hanover County Board of Elections this morning.