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Cooper takes legal battle over state elections, ethics board to NC Supreme Court

Gov. Roy Cooper has taken his legal battle with legislative leaders over the State Board of Elections and Ethics Enforcement to the North Carolina Supreme Court.

Cooper asked last week that the court block the law creating the bipartisan Board, of which he has yet to appoint members to. The Governor’s spokesman, Ford Porter, told The News & Observer yesterday that Cooper wants the Supreme Court to make a decision before he acts.

The newspaper article has a full rundown of Cooper’s Supreme Court request and legislators’ reactions.

Attorneys for House Speaker Tim Moore and Senate leader Phil Berger called on the court Monday to deny the request, and both the GOP legislative leaders and the N.C. Republican Party say Cooper needs to make appointments immediately.

A statement from Moore and Berger last week says the board “sits vacant with no accountable oversight of lobbying, ethics or campaign finance.” Agency staff members are in charge of the elections and ethics board for now but can’t take any actions that require the board to weigh in.

The article also outlines Cooper’s previous attempts in lower courts to get the law struck down.

In the request seeking a block on the new law, Cooper’s attorneys said that if the Supreme Court sides with the governor, he’ll immediately appoint five new members to the old version of the election board. That board would consist of three Democrats and two Republicans. But if the court rejects the request, he’ll appoint members to the new board – four from each political party, selected from a list submitted by the parties.

Cooper’s lawsuit argues the change in the elections board violates the constitutional separation of powers, and his attorneys urged the Supreme Court to take the case.

You can read the full article here.

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