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Raleigh, NC — After the breaking news regarding Dr. Harris’ decision not to run in the special election for the Ninth District, Chairman Robin Hayes has released the following statement:

“The North Carolina Republican Party fully supports Dr. Harris’ decision. The most important thing for him to address is his health. This has been a grueling process for all involved, and we unequivocally support his call for a new election. There are numerous quality candidates that are discussing a run and although the Party will not be involved in a primary, we have no doubt that a competitive nominee will emerge.

“We continue to be concerned that there is little interest determining how many votes were affected. The long-standing legal precedent on these issues has been to make an effort to protect legitimate votes cast in elections. No election is perfect, but lowering the standard for new elections may have significant consequences on our politics and electoral system in the future. Make no mistake, the Party supports all criminal prosecutions of those who acted with intent to violate laws. This includes the behaviors exposed during the hearing and the other groups that deserve a full investigation like the North Carolina Democrat Party-funded Bladen County Improvement Association PAC.

“The systematic failure of State Boards, county boards, investigators, and prosecutors going back at least a decade must be rectified in order to restore confidence in our electoral system. We stand ready to work with legislators who have already begun to address absentee ballot problems. We all must work together to solve this long-standing problem that has clearly been prevalent for years.

“A word to Dan McCready and his Democrat allies: You did not get more legal votes and there are no free lunches in politics. You will be held responsible for the extremist positions your Party has taken and your role to erase more than 283,000 legal votes by citizens of the Ninth Congressional District. “