North Carolina Republicans want to inspect Durham County voting machines

Republicans lawmakers in North Carolina said that they want to inspect voting machines that were used during the 2020 presidential election in Durham County to see if they could have been connected to the internet, which is illegal in the Tar Heel State.

Rep. Jeff McNeely, a North Carolina Republican and member of the freedom caucus, said he and other members of the group pulled Durham County out of a hat that had the name of all 100 North Carolina counties, according to WRAL.

McNeely, during a news conference, said he and other Republicans want to inspect the voting machines because of “many, many millions of accusations” of “machine tampering and votes being switched because of modems, according to WRAL.

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According to North Carolina state law, voting machines do not have modems and are not permitted to connect to the internet.

“We look forward to working with them, proving that our elections were true and were valid and there was nothing wrong with them. If that's not the case, then we look to do an investigation, and if there needs to be criminal charges, they will be filed,” McNeely said to reporters, according to WRAL.

McNeely said that he has already received approval from the people who supply the machines, and now he needs permission from the North Carolina Board of Elections and the county in question.

He also said Republicans "have the right through our Constitution," to conduct the inspection, according to the News & Observer.

Durham County officials, however, are not on board with the inspection. The county’s Elections Director Dereck Bowens said such an examination would not be permitted to move forward.

“No one will be permitted to inspect voting equipment in Durham County, as per statute and direction from the Executive Director of the State Board of Elections,” Bowens said, according to WRAL.

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State Board of Elections Executive Director Karen Brinson Bell sounded a similar note, saying that the election in the county cannot be thrown into confusion.

“Unauthorized individuals who are not elections professionals have no authority to open and inspect voting equipment,” she added.

The effort to investigate the voting machines comes after a number of GOP-led states, including Arizona, launched audits of the 2020 presidential election after former President TrumpDonald TrumpBaldwin calls Trump criticism following 'Rust' shooting 'surreal' Haley hits the stump in South Carolina Mary Trump files to dismiss Trump's lawsuit over NYT tax story MORE and his allies repeated unsupported claims that the vote was tarnished by fraud.

The results of the Arizona audit were released last week which confirmed President Biden’s victory, concluding that he came out on top by a wider margin than originally tabulated.

Trump won the state of North Carolina by nearly 75,000 votes, which translates to 1.3 percent, according to The New York Times

When North Carolina Republican lawmakers were asked on Thursday if they believe Biden is the duly elected president, those present said no, according to the News & Observer.