Ballots are cast, but counting will resume next week in North Carolina

Voters make their selection in 2020 General Election races Tuesday afternoon at the Emerald Isle Community Center. (Jackie Starkey photo)

BEAUFORT — Election Day may be over but vote counting will continue and North Carolina election results remain unofficial until late next week.

The delay is normal and happens each election as part of the state’s certification process.

“It’s business as usual, just on a larger scale,” Carteret County Board of Elections Director Caitlin Sabadish said Thursday.

The Carteret County Board of Elections will accept supplemental absentee-by-mail ballots postmarked by Election Day until 5 p.m. Thursday. The county’s canvass for the 2020 General Election – the process through which the board certifies election results – is set for 11 a.m. Friday, Nov. 13.

A number of races in North Carolina, including the presidential contest, U.S. Senate, state attorney general and State Supreme Court chief justice, likely won’t be resolved until all ballots are counted.

Carteret County has the potential for as many as 1,800 supplemental absentee ballots, according to Ms. Sabadish. That figure is based on unreturned absentee ballots the county office sent out, but she said not all will result in an eligible ballot.

“I really have no idea what we’re going to have,” she said. Some of those 1,800 outstanding could have been issued to voters who changed course and ended up voting on Election Day or during one-stop, others were duplicates and still others will simply not be returned, or not returned or postmarked on time.

As of Thursday, the county also had roughly 30 ballots “pending cure,” meaning there were deficiencies with the returned ballot that the voter can remedy with a cure affidavit. The BOE can accept cure certifications through 5 p.m. Thursday, as well. 

All the supplemental absentees are set to be considered for approval at the BOE’s 5 p.m. Thursday meeting.

An additional 460 provisional ballots in Carteret County have yet to be counted. Those contribute to the 40,766 the State Board of Elections reported across North Carolina as of Thursday morning.

This year’s count of local provisional ballots tracks closely with the last presidential election. In 2016, Carteret County had 443 provisionals.

Provisionals are poll ballots, cast by voters at polling locations when there are problems with them voting a regular ballot. Reasons for voting a provisional can include missing or incorrect voter registration, voting at the wrong polling place on Election Day and more. The voted provisional ballots are then researched by staff to determined eligibility to vote or vote a particular ballot or measure.  

The County BOE will gather Tuesday morning, after the board’s 9 a.m. regular meeting, to review and count approved provisional ballots.

All these activities are part of the normal election process, Ms. Sabadish noted, though with North Carolina’s electors unclaimed and tight margins in several races, voters and others are anxious for official results.

“I have every confidence, every confidence, in the election system in North Carolina,” County Board of Elections Chairperson Susie Cuthrell said. “…People need to be patient. They need to realize our system has worked…”

All the meetings the board is set to have are open to the public and will be available virtually, including the hand-eye audit set for Friday. During the audit, bipartisan teams will review each ballot from two randomly chosen precincts in the county - in this case, Morehead No.  1 and Beaufort No. 1 - and check the presidential race against DS200 totals from Election Day.

To connect to any of the board’s meetings, visit and access the Zoom links.

Ms. Sabadish also noted Thursday the office has been “inundated” with calls from voters concerned their voter history – searchable through the SBOE’s website – does not reflect that they voted on Election Day.

The director advised voters not to be alarmed. That data is updated manually by staff, and the process hasn’t taken place yet. In a release Thursday, the State Board of Elections said the process could take several weeks or longer.

“If they put their ballot into the DS200, it is counted,” Ms. Sabadish confirmed.


Contact Jackie Starkey at 252-726-7081, ext. 225; email; or follow on Twitter @jackieccnt.

(29) comments

David Collins

This is a disgrace , as predicted . Need to go back to voting on Nov 3rd , one person one vote and yes you do need to be there with a picture ID . Same for absentee ballots . A photo is submitted with the ballot and it must be on site by Election Day . No excuses . Nov 3rd should be a national holiday for voting purposes . Expenses should be born by the taxpayers , it is that important . It can be done if the citizens will just demand it .


Agree, David. I have to show ID at the booze store, but not to vote. We did demand voter ID, but the courts struck it down.


NC is an embarrassment with vote counting! Must be stopping often to eat a bbq sandwich.


We knew over 150 years ago that we were going to have an election on November 3, 2020. Yet we still can't count.


What utter nonsense is so often posted by the same 4-5 people, Absentee ballots and vote by mail have worked successfully for generations, now because of the paranoid denial fantasy of the the president suddenly its all suspect, at least to the gullible few. Vote in person, shall we transport the elderly and infirm to the polls? Lets stop the battles& world wide missions around and transport our military in so they too can vote in person. Pandemic, well we know thats just the latest hoax against the president and will be no impediment to in person voting. Despite their best effort at voter suppression, and now the subsequent unbalanced whining and accusations, It certainly looks like trump is going to lose. Even Laura Ingram is hinting to the fox mis-led arm chair patriots that its over, and trump should act like an adult. (good luck with that laura)


I’ve already conceded that Trump lost. And I voted by mail in ballot. Have no problem with that.

“utter nonsense is so often posted by the same 4-5 people” is just another ridiculous statement that you know is wrong, misleading and unyielding.


Someone (grouch) continues to chronically complain about the views and opinions of 4-5 of us that post on this site.

I guess one would rather relish in their own thoughts than look at the other side of the coin. So glad I’m not that shallow. Minds can grow with opposing views and become stagnant with the same ole same ole.

I wonder why someone so negative would continue to keep coming back for more, never being satisfied. Just walk away - don’t log-on. I guess they just don’t have anyone else to vent to. Venters just want validation of their views.

Or is it lack of empathy for others


Ahh the grouch that stole Christmas, don't wonder why i come back for more. its a counterpoint to the posters who hold what appears to be a unified uber right wing view. Not all people have that same view, and it might be nice for others in the county to see that. We have some people repeatedly calling for civil war, citing their shame to be american because the opposing party has won the election, while I blame the media to a large extent for the divisions in society, people have a responsibility to accept, nay encourage a peaceful transfer of power. The melodramatic pronouncements of tyranny, socialism, civil war, and other dire consequences is.. either childish, IPD, or brainwashed thinking. jeep you said not long ago how boring this site would be if it was only the like minded breakfast club repeating themselves daily. Now the right says the left has been fighting the 2016 election from then till now. President elect Biden has called for unity. We have serious issues facing the country, coroavirus, extreme debt, foreign powers, are the reds going to get behind our new president, or will it be more gridlock. Rest assured after a period of anguish and conspiracies fox news will return to a 3 hr nightly harangue fest against Biden . CNN & Fox will continue to poison the well ( of public opinion)


I do agree with some of the things you say about Trump, ski. He is a narcissist, obnoxious, not politically correct, abrasive, wealthy white privileged, but I like his results.

And please don’t come back with what results. You know them by now.

Yes he’s a poor loser, but someone said once show me a good loser and I’ll show you a loser.

It’s not really Biden I’m against, but you do know he has health issues and exaggerates/lies more than Trump. It’s the folks that will lead Biden by the nose that really concern me.

And you know good and well the left has been after Trump from day one of his inauguration. Actually before that time. Never gave him a chance. He’s not a career politician and doesn’t play their games.

I truly don’t believe that anyone can bring unity to our country, but if Biden can, I will support his efforts. I just feel in my heart/mind that we have made a terrible mistake with Biden/Harris, but apparently I’m in the minority

morehood city res

the same voting process seemed to work for you in 2016, and all other elections when republicans won. but now all of sudden you don't like and it's fraud? stop counting here but keep counting there? besides, the mail in ballots could have been counted early but who kept that from happening?


Didn't work for me in 2016, and if you'll notice, it's not working for most folks now.


I have never been ashamed to be American, till now. The American people have the right to be stupid; and they exercised that right. Enjoy the high taxes, socialist government, and extreme tyranny that is forth coming. A very sad day in America.


I agree corrupt. At least the educated folks of NC voted in the right direction.


IT is but a matter of time before the next civil war begins. It is now inevitable.


Just because the fake news which seem to include the Left's favorite bushy tail called the election doesn't mean the fat lady has sung. Election law expert, Cleta Mitchell, ticked off some irregularities & opined that she believes the president has won re-election.

David Collins

Counting mail in ballots early sounds like the prudent thing to do . Doesn’t it ? Sadly , there is no such thing as a secret these days . Too much money and power in knowing in advance how things are trending . Money would change hands , the word would get out and “ adjustments “ would be instituted .

These electronic tabulators are not the answer either . They are software driven . ALL software programs have back doors installed , supposedly for tweaking purposes . This tweaking can include modifying the program to do any number of tasks not in the original contract . Anyone out there that works with this stuff will bear me up when I say results can be fiddled with in a way that includes shunting a value from one column to another after a certain number of hits . This goes on and on throughout the tabulation process resulting in one column getting an artificially higher value . That value is adjustable before tabulation begins and can be returned to normal at the end of the tabulation job . In other words , candidate A gets a programmed number of candidate Bs votes and no one is the wiser . During testing mode all seems normal but when actually on the job the modifications kick in . VW did something similar with their Diesel engines to pass emissions testing , if you remember . So all this is not new .

Have seen an example of this with the distributive control system used at a prior job and it worked quite well . Did not take an Einstein to make these tweaks , just a bit of training .

That is why I have said in the past , the old Mark 1 Eyeball is the best way to go .

David Collins

Sadly drewski is correct , the knives and hatchets will come out , already have , in force and the slice and dice news blathers will again regain the airways . Onward , ever onward toward 2024 where if you vote for me , I will set you free .

David Collins

Let us hope not Corrupt . We are better than that . A civil war only puts the power in the hands of those with the biggest guns , not the best minds . World events even today are demonstrating that . My question for today is what is up with our postal system ? Things that used to show up like clockwork are a week or more late . The folks at the post office just shrug their shoulders when asked . No response , silent as the grave , they are .


Free to Good Home - Red MAGA Hat.....or should I keep for 2024?


jeep: I disagree that Biden Lies more then trump, While he has told some woppers its not the daily count that trump accumulates. Politicians, like salesman will say whatever is required to meet their goal, possibly they even believe what they say in the moment, but the realities of gov't often make it impossible. you suggest the left was after trump from day 1, OK, true. Was the right all love and fuzzy cooperation during 8 yrs of obama? Moscow mitch proudly calling himself " the grimm reaper" merrick garland ? how many benghazi investigations 11? how many other investigations? (without a single indictment or conviction I might add) It is not as one sided as you seem to want to believe. Now despite all the reckless rhetoric on here about civil war, tyranny, and 11 other daily tirades, none of that is going to happen. patriots know the republic can survive a dem president, the white house has changed hands 29 times. pretending there is widespread voter fraud, enough to change the election is wishful thinking. Compromise is what is needed, or one party needs to have all 3 houses for any legislative agenda to proceed. otherwise will be in the unpleasant situation of see sawing between policies, accomplished by executive order every 4 or 8 yrs.


Agree with all you said, ski, except for one party having the house, senate and white house. If that happens, then the prisoners would be running the jail.

David Collins

Biden telling whoppers , not even officially selected and already off to the races . News flash , they all do it , usually by selective omission . Don’t say anything definitive less you get painted into a corner . One of the golden rules . Realistically , by the time your promise gets through the house and the senate it usually ends up looking like a porcupine with all the riders attached and nothing at all like you started with . Hence the calls for line entry veto power . This new administration will fare no better . That you can take to the bank .


One party controlling all 3 branches is probably not good for anybody including those in charge. Even Biden may be better off with Ds not winning the Senate. "Pay backs" seem more vicious when the other party regains control that's if they ever regain control.


Also have a cap & mask worn only once. Maybe we could donate to the "big guy". Be interesting to see him wear them in the right state of forgetfulness & familiar company. Might fulfill his desire that night out when he was looking for who was he said?


Good one, dc. [smile]


I would have thought the whole sleepy joe dementia thing was put to bed by the debates, obviously not. perhaps you should look at you tube of trump flubs for comparison, ranning the ranparts and capturing the airports? among hundreds of others. Then there is the collection of trump supporters say the darndest things,, but then we see that here.


Aw shucks some folks can't take a joke unless of course it fits their own sense of humor.


Hey, it's like Brit said all of old folks are forgetful occasionally but some of us can kind of still hold our own with the youngsters. Like Ronnie said we won't hold your youth & inexperience against you.

David Collins

Guys , and gals , the election is basically over . Loose ends will be tidied up as always . Doubt much of anything will come over the various accusations, for the good of the country as they say . You can chose to live with it or let your fury take you to an early grave with a rocky road along the way . Hopefully the system will eventually work out and any truths will reveal themselves on both sides . Nothing is simple or transparent with any government under the sun . Ours is no different . How about putting the knives away and work on dealing with reality . That is what really matters in life .

2022 and2024 are just a hop , skip and a jump down the road so don’t borrow trouble along the way .

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