• North Carolina Congress outcome unsure with absentee probe

    By: GARY D. ROBERTSON and EMERY P. DALESIO, Associated Press

    Updated:

    RALEIGH, N.C. - The nation's last unresolved fall congressional race is awash in doubt as North Carolina election investigators concentrate on a rural county where absentee-ballot fraud allegations are so flagrant they've put the Election Day result into question.

    [ALSO READ: Channel 9 uncovers similarities between absentee ballots in U.S. House District 9 race]

    Final unofficial ballot totals had shown Republican Mark Harris ahead of Democrat Dan McCready by 905 votes in the 9th Congressional District, which covers nine south-central counties.

    But the state elections board refused to certify the results last week with all the other Election Day contests, with the board's new chairman pointing to "claims of numerous irregularities and concerted fraudulent activities" involving mail-in ballots.

    [ALSO READ: Who is McCrae Dowless, man who appears to be center of 9th District investigation?]

    The probe appears connected to the activities of a longtime political operative from Bladen County, where allegations about mail-in absentee ballots initially surfaced two years ago.

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