North Carolina Election Board Adds Trump Challengers to GOP Primary Ballot

December 20, 2019 by Dan McCue

Former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld and former Rep. Joe Walsh will appear on North Carolina’s Republican presidential primary ballot, despite objections from state GOP leaders, the state Board of Elections said Friday.

The bipartisan elections panel voted unanimously to add Weld and Walsh to the ballot following requests from their campaigns.

The board did not act on requests from more obscure candidates seeking to be added to the Republican and Democratic ballots.

The North Carolina presidential primaries for both parties will be held on March 3.

Under state law in North Carolina, the state political parties are responsible for submitting lists of candidates to appear on the ballot. However, the law also allows the elections board to add more individuals if they are actively running for office and “recognized in the news media” as doing so.

During the meeting on Friday, Jonathan Sink, executive director of the North Carolina Republican Party argued Weld didn’t meet the legal standard because he is not well known in the state.

“If you asked 100 people on the street who this individual was, they would not be able to tell you he’s a candidate for president,” Sink said.

He did not mention Walsh.

The North Carolina State Board of Elections consists of three Democrats and two Republicans, all of whom voted in favor of Weld and Walsh.

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