North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory—a supporter of dangerous and discriminatory anti-trans laws, black voter suppression, and invasive abortion policies—lost his election to state Attorney General Roy Cooper. Now he's claiming mass "voter fraud," but has no real evidence to back that up.
His tactics include publishing lists of "suspicious" voter names he "suspects" of casting fraudulent ballots, mostly in counties with large black populations who have seen their voting rights under assault ever since Republicans took control of state government in 2012.
Now, as he waits for a partial recount of the ballots cast that cannot possibly close the gap between himself and Cooper, McCrory may be attempting some legislative trickery so that he can pack the state Supreme Court with Republicans. Slate's Mark Joseph Stern explains:
Currently, seven justices sit on the North Carolina Supreme Court. Before the election, the court split 4-3, with Republicans in the majority. On Election Day, however, voters ousted a conservative justice, replacing him with a Democrat and tipping the court to the left. Republicans already tried to prevent the progressive candidate from running, passing legislation that was ultimately ruled unconstitutional. Now rumors are flying around the capital that McCrory and Republican legislators will push through a bill expanding the court from seven to nine justices—allowing McCrory to appoint two new justices and maintaining Republican dominance over the judiciary.
McCrory and the state GOP have previously used these special sessions to sneak in unpopular legislation, as Stern notes; the last one called was to pass HB2, the anti-trans "bathroom bill."
Sam Stecklow is the Weekend Editor for Fusion.