By Erin Smith
The filing period for the new 9th Congressional District election has gotten underway on Monday. The filing period will close at 5 p.m. on Friday, March 15.
As of 4:30 p.m. on Monday, one person has filed for the Republican primary. Stony Dwight Rushing, of Wingate, NC has filed seeking election to the seat. Rushing currently serves as a member of the Union County Board of Commissioners.
Libertarian Jeff Scott of Charlotte also filed seeking election to the US House District 9 seat.
Former Republican candidate Mark Harris said he would not run again citing health reasons. Democratic candidate Dan McCready has said he will run again, though he has yet to officially file for the seat.
The North Carolina State Board of Elections ordered a new election for the NC 9th Congressional District race following an investigation into absentee ballot irregularities in Bladen County. An evidentiary hearing was conducted in February where investigators presented evidence and testimonies were heard from several individuals regarding an alleged absentee ballot harvesting, operated by McCrae Dowless.
Dowless and those who worked with him are alleged to have collected absentee ballots from Bladen County residents and offered to mail them for the voters. They are also alleged to have witnessed numerous absentee ballots and to have turned in hundreds of absentee ballots to the Bladen County Board of Elections.
Dowless along with Caitlyn Croom, Rebecca D. Thompson, Matthew Monroe Mathis and Tonia Marie Gordon were all indicted by a Wake County Grand Jury in late February.
Dowless is charged with three counts of felony obstruction of justice, two counts of conspiracy to commit felony obstruction of justice and two counts of possession of absentee ballots.
Croom is charged with conspiracy to commit felony obstruction of justice and possession of an absentee ballot.
Thompson has been charged with conspiracy to commit felonious obstruction of justice and possession of absentee ballot.
Mathis has been charged with conspiracy to commit felonious obstruction of justice, possession of absentee ballot and falsely signing certification on absentee ballot.
Gordon has been charged with conspiracy to commit felonious obstruction of justice and possession of absentee ballot.
The new election for the Bladen County Commissioner District 3 and the Bladen County Soil and Water District Board will take place on May 14th. NC State Board of Elections Spokesman Patrick Gannon said in the case of the Bladen County Commissioner District 3 race and the Bladen County Soil and Water District race, there will be no new candidate filing period nor a new primary.
“Those two races are redo races with the same candidates that ran in November,” said Gannon.Share: