‘No evidence whatsoever’ of problems with election returns, Durham County election official says

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — Durham County Board of Elections officials are asking for voters to have confidence in them and the system.

UPDATE: Durham County Board of Elections to hold hearing on 93K vote recount request

Last Friday an election protest was filed by the general counsel of the Republican party.  It demanded more than 90,000 Durham County ballots be recounted by hand. It also claimed there was an error in machines that scan ballots which caused memory cards to fail, prompting manual tabulation of the results into the state system.

In the governor’s race, the original statewide count shows Democrat Roy Cooper ahead of incumbent Governor Pat McCrory by approximately 5,000 votes. The Cooper campaign said Tuesday that the attorney general now leads by 5,387 following the counting of absentee ballots in 10 counties.

Now that a protest has been filed, there will be two potential hearings.

The first will take place Wednesday at 8 a.m. This hearing will take place to find out whether or not there’s probable cause. If they find evidence into the allegations made, there will be another hearing on Friday.

RELATED: Durham County elections officials outline problems on Election Day

Tuesday morning, CBS North Carolina spoke to Durham County’s Board of Elections Chairman Bill Brian. He said Durham County does not have a history of bad elections.

“As of today, and I say this with absolutely no hesitance, we have seen no evidence whatsoever that there’s any inaccuracy or any problem with any of the returns reported on Election Day,” Brian said. “As I said before, if the returns would’ve been reported at 7:30 p.m. they would’ve been the same numbers that were reported at 11:30p.m.”

It could take several days to count the more than 90,000 votes.

For future elections, Durham County voters will use new voting equipment. The county had planned to make the purchase before the problem on Election Day.

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