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Voters Accused of Fraud Share Stories, Push for Change

Voters in 16 North Carolina counties who were falsely accused of voter fraud by Gov. Pat McCrory’s 2016 reelection campaign are sharing their stories of shock and outrage with the State Board of Elections and calling on the agency to change the process that allowed charges to be filed against them without any evidence of wrongdoing. A 14-minute excerpt of the emotional testimony from seven voters in available at demnc.co/ncsboecall.

In a series of official protest complaints filed last November, agents for the McCrory campaign claimed that the voters cast “invalid ballots” because they were “known to have voted in multiple states” or voted while being “adjudged guilty of a felony.”

“I was literally shocked. I was upset for several days,” Betty B. Adams, a falsely accused voter from Cumberland County, told Kim Strach, executive director of the State Board of Elections, in a meeting on Monday. Joseph Golden described the surprise and frustration of having his name appear in Brunswick County newspapers and someone on social media writing, “There’s a cheater amongst us.”

Anne Hughes of Moore County told Strach that she was “just incredulous” when she learned that she and her husband had been accused of voting in two states. “I was shocked and horrified and furious to learn our name was on a list with people who were alleged to have broken a federal law.”

“You obey the law, you do all the stuff you’re supposed to, and then some person just randomly, without any burden of proof, can accuse you of breaking the law,” added Aysha Nasir of Orange County.

Adams, Golden, Hughes and Nasir were part of the delegation of falsely accused voters who shared their experiences on a conference call with Strach, other agency staff, and leaders of Democracy North Carolina, the voting-rights organization that arranged the meeting.

Voters Accused of Fraud Share Stories of Shock & Anger, Push State Elections Board for Changes

Voters in 16 North Carolina counties who were falsely accused of voter fraud by Gov. Pat McCrory’s 2016 reelection campaign are sharing their stories of shock and outrage with the State Board of Elections and calling on the agency to change the process that allowed charges to be filed against them without any evidence of wrongdoing.

Joe Golden, Southport

Joe Golden was falsely accused of voter fraud by Gov. McCrory's reelection campaign in 2016. His name was plastered on the cover of his local papers and he was called a "cheater" on social media.

JOE GOLDEN: "IF I WAS WRONGFULLY ACCUSED OF VOTER FRAUD, HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE TOO?"

Joe Golden was falsely accused of voter fraud by Gov. McCrory's reelection campaign in 2016. Joe says the experience changed the way he looks at the words 'voter fraud:' "if I can be accused of voter fraud, having done nothing wrong, it makes me wonder how many people are accused of voter fraud and had absolutely no intent, in any way, to undermine the system."