Conservative Civitas sues NC Board of Elections over same-day registration votes

The Civitas Institute, a conservative media outlet, is suing the North Carolina State Board of Elections in federal court in an attempt to have same-day registration votes held until a mail verification process “can run its course.”

Civitas claims in the 10-page lawsuit that voter registration applications submitted through the same-day registration process violate North Carolina law because they cannot be completely verified until at least nine days after the Board certifies election results.

Moreover, the use of these [same-day registration] ballots creates a separate class of registrants, with non-[same-day registration] registrants in a separate, unequal category.

The suit was filed in U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of North Carolina by Civitas President Francis X. De Luca against the State Board, Executive Director Kim Westbrook Strach and members of the Board.

Civitas states in the lawsuit that the earliest same-day registration applications could be verified through mail, if notices were sent out in a timely fashion, would be Dec. 7, which means invalid ballots will be counted.

The lawsuit doesn’t note any one particular race Civitas is concerned about, but it’s not difficult to read between the lines, especially considering the lawsuit was filed amid numerous protests to local election boards in reference to the tight gubernatorial race.

Considering the narrow margins in certain statewide races indicated by the unofficial results, the inclusion of invalid ballots could mean the difference between one candidate winning over another.

Based on evidence cited in the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals case, North Carolina State Conference of NAACP v. McCrory, Civitas estimates in the lawsuit that there will be 3,000 invalid same-day registration ballots included in the State Board’s certification of election results on Nov. 29.

There were 97,753 same-day registrants in North Carolina with the following political party breakdown: Democrats, 34,484; Republicans, 33,550; Libertarian, 857; and Unaffiliated, 28,862.

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