Pat McCrory, the embattled North Carolina governor, who basically cost himself re-election by passing the state’s bathroom bill — which has cost the state $630 million in loss of revenue, already — refuses to concede the election, even as his path has been all but foreclosed.
Dismayed, befuddled, and surprised that the massive Republican voter suppression effort in the state didn’t generate enough votes for him to win (although, it certainly hurt Hillary Clinton’s chances), McCrory — who lost to Attorney General Roy Cooper, a Democrat — has been doing everything in his power in the three weeks since the election to try and steal it back by alleging voter fraud and election rigging in African-American districts, an allegation that has proven to have no merit. He’s made efforts to have thousands of votes thrown out, but rulings backed mostly by Republican judges have not gone his way. In fact, as votes continued to trickle in over the last three weeks, Cooper’s lead over McCrory surpassed the 10,000 vote mark, meaning that McCrory could no longer demand a state-wide recount.
McCrory has, however, succeeded in forcing a partial recount in one county — Durham county, where Duke University resides — based on software problems in one precinct. It’s unlikely to overturn the vote, but if McCrory can reduce the voter margin to under 10,000 votes, he can force a recount, and then he — as some have feared — could cast so much doubt on the statewide vote that he might be able to throw the choice to the Republicans in the state house to choose, in effect stealing the election.
That doesn’t look as likely as it did a few weeks ago, but McCrory is certainly being a sore loser about all of this. Meanwhile, a federal court did order this week that the state would have to redraw its gerrymandered districts, which discount the value of the African-American vote. The state is evenly split among Republicans and Democrats, but because of the illegal gerrymandering, Republicans hold the vast majority of seats in the State House. This order would force the districts to be redrawn and elections to be held in every district next year.
The Republicans are appealing, arguing that the federal court “overreached” in trying to fix an obvious racist situation.