BEAUFORT — Carteret County Board of Elections staffers and poll workers recounted all 42,848 ballots cast in the Nov. 3 General Election Friday, resulting in N.C. Supreme Court Chief Justice Cheri Beasley picking up one additional vote.
Ms. Beasley demanded the statewide recount after election night tallies showed her losing the seat by 409 of more than 5.3 million votes cast in the race.
“(The) recount reflected 1 additional vote for Beasley and 1 less vote for (Paul) Newby,” County Board of Elections Chairperson Susie Cuthrell told the News-Times Saturday morning.
Carteret County’s results pace with others across the state. As of Saturday morning, data on the State Board of Elections website showed counties that had finished reporting only a handful of discrepancies.
To conduct the recount, the County BOE brought poll workers back to the office in Beaufort Friday morning, where they split up by precinct or one-stop early voting location, retrieved the ballots boxes, reopened the polls and fed the county’s 42,848 ballots in the machine.
“It looks chaotic, but it’s not,” BOE Chariperson Susie Cuthrell said Friday amid the bustle of the kick off of the recount.
She and board members Amy Holland and Jeanette Deese all said they expected the results of the recount to be the same as the Election Day tally.
In Carteret County, typically a Republican stronghold, Justice Beasley won just shy of 30% of the vote, with 12,330 ballots, according to the Election Day count.
In addition to the recount, Ms. Beasley protested the BOE’s rejection of nine ballots in Carteret County – part of a wider move in which the campaign lodged protests of rejected ballots in a number of counties.
The Carteret board will conduct a preliminary hearing on the protest and those ballots – a mix of absentee and provisional the board did not approve or count – at 2 p.m. Monday during a special meeting.
The in-person meeting will be limited to six people, but the public can connect to watch the hearing at carteretcountync.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_zvP5_sxBTwWo-PDv0rl4TQ.
The board will consider whether the protest has been “substantially compiled with the form requirement,” according to the notice, and whether the protest “establishes probable cause of an outcome-determinative violation.”
Ms. Cuthrell said Friday morning staff was at work pulling all the information about each about the nine ballots in question in preparation for the proceedings.
The board has the option to dismiss the complaint or move the protest to a hearing. If dismissed, Ms. Beasley can appeal the ruling.
Contact Jackie Starkey at 252-726-7081, ext. 225; email firstname.lastname@example.org; or follow on Twitter @jackieccnt.