Democrat Precinct Packing Called Out in Bladen

Sep 30, 2021 (Elizabethtown, NC) The Bladen County Republican Party Chairman (BCGOP), Wayne Schaeffer, yesterday,  filed an official complaint or protest over how his county’s Democrat-controlled Board of Elections packed 10 of the county’s 17 precincts with all three election judges from the Democrat list of candidates and none from the Republican Party’s list.

His complaint (viewed by clicking here) admits that he submitted only 17 names for the 17 precinct positions his party is permitted to fill. According to NCGS 163-41(c), “where possible,” Schaeffer should have submitted two names for each precinct instead of one, and this is the loophole the Democrat-majority board used to nullify a majority of the Republican appointments.

As a result, the protest alleges, the Board removed three Republican appointees without cause, reassigned two Republican appointees unilaterally, removed any out-of-precinct Judges appointed by the BCGOP and selected names provided by the Democrat Party Chairman.

By the September CBE meeting, Schaeffer had analyzed the Democrat CBE’s actions, but he was denied a chance to speak and the meeting was abruptly adjourned. Among his findings reported in his protest. . .

  1. Three precincts are fully staffed by Democrat Judges. This appears to violate a portion of §163-41, which states, “Not more than one judge in each precinct shall belong to the same political party as the chief judge.”
  2. “Eight precincts in which no Republican or Republican-nominated UNA was included in the staff, thus resulting in fully Democrat controlled precincts with no Republican representation whatsoever.”
  3. “Whereas the similarities of the Democrat Party Chairman’s unsigned list of August 10, and the final list of judges approved by the partisan Democrat BOE members at the Sept. 14th meeting, clearly suggests a private collaboration among the 3 Democrat BOE members to prevent Republican Board Members from having an opportunity to research and/or vet the Democrat nominees for legitimacy,” which would appear to violate the state’s laws on public meetings.

Bladen CBE members appear to have exploited a section of the law (§163-41(c) that gives the majority party–but not the minority party–the statutory right to appoint a Judge when only one person is nominated.

The law is silent on whether or not the minority party is automatically disqualified from submitting a single name, but the Democrats on the Board exploited that loophole to replace most of the Republican nominees with persons nominated on the Democrat lists.

Shaeffer told VIP that he submitted the complaint to Bladen CBE Director, Chris Williams, NCSBE Associate Legal Counsel Kelly Tornow, several Republican elected officials, and the NC GOP Chiel Counsel, Phillip Thomas.

“Phil Thomas told me they’re hearing similar issues from the counties all across the state, so apparently I’m not the only one.”

Bladen County Republican Protest of BoE 17 Aug and 14 Sept Judges appointments

We’ll keep you posted on how this matter develops.

[Today’s video podcast on this story is below.]