I joked yesterday that there might not be any real voters in Bladen County. Now I’m wondering if at the end of all this there might not be any legitimately elected officials.
WBTV’s Nick Ochsner is reporting that a THIRD possible ballot mill has popped up in Bladen County, “Records released by the North Carolina State Board of Elections this week and campaign finance reports point to a third coordinated effort surrounding absentee ballots in the county’s 2018 elections. ” http://bit.ly/2B4eKGT
It turns out McRae Dowless was not an original thinker (shocker I know). WBTV reports that a sign-in list of those who dropped off absentee ballot request forms to the Bladen County BOE shows that least two other people submitted more than 100 request forms: Michael Cogdell, a Bladen County commission, and Lola Wooten.
A campaign finance report filed by the Bladen Improvement Association PAC show both Cogdell and Wooten were paid by the organization for get out the vote efforts.
Interestingly enough this is not the first time this PAC has been accused of malfeasance. The PAC was the subject of a complaint alleging impropriety in the 2016 race for governor. The complaint was filed in 2016 by lawyers affiliated with then-Governor Pat McCrory on behalf of, wait for it, McRae Dowless.
If you thought 2016 was as far back as this goes, you thought wrong. The Charlotte Observer reported, “The investigation into voting irregularities in the 2018 election in Bladen County is, at least, the fifth elections case since 2010 in the rural eastern North Carolina county.” http://bit.ly/2UihZ62
A 2010 case, investigated by the State Bureau of Investigation was closed in 2013 without any criminal charges being filed.
In November 2016, the state board opened cases into three different groups in the county, according to a letter from Jon David, district attorney for Bladen, Brunswick and Columbus counties.
“If Democrat elected officials get caught up in this, does that mean it will go away?”