Recount of 90K ballots sought in tight NC governor’s race

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DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — A formal complaint that could affect North Carolina’s tight governor’s race demands 90,000 Durham County ballots be recounted by hand in because tabulations were manually entered into the state election system by local officials on election night with “bleary eyes and tired hands.”

A copy of the protest by attorney Thomas Stark was released Saturday by Republican Gov. Pat McCrory’s campaign. The document shows it was filed Friday with the Durham elections board.

Stark says an error in machines that scan ballots caused memory cards to fail, prompting manual tabulation of results into the state system.

The original statewide count shows Democrat Roy Cooper ahead of McCrory by 5,000 votes. But tens of thousands of provisional ballots still must be examined. Counties must submit their final results by Nov. 18.

In a statement, Roy Cooper’s spokesman Jama Little said, “The McCrory campaign is now using NCGOP counsel to attack the Republican controlled board of elections in a desperate attempt to undermine election results. The facts are McCrory’s appointees were the ones who administered the election and reported the results. Any claims of ‘malfeasance’ are nothing more than a desperate attempt by the McCrory campaign to overturn results of an election they have lost.”