01/22/04 — Election rematch set for March 23

View Archive

Election rematch set for March 23

By Barbara Arntsen
Published in News on January 22, 2004 2:04 PM

A rematch between Goldsboro City Council candidates Danny Roseborough and Jackie Warrick may be held March 23.

The State Board of Elections has requested that date for the second election. The request goes to the U.S. Justice Department for final approval.

A letter was sent Wednesday from Gary Bartlett, executive director of the State Board of Elections, to the voting rights section of the Justice Department. Goldsboro must get approval for any changes to its election process from the federal government to ensure that the voting rights of minorities are not infringed upon.

Bartlett explained in his letter that the State Board of Elections had ordered a special municipal election for District 6 in Goldsboro.

"This special election was called after an evidentiary hearing produced evidence of irregularities and improprieties in the November 2003 District 6 elections, which tainted the results of the election and cast doubts on its fairness," the letter stated.

Bartlett wrote that the election date would not have an adverse effect upon minorities.

"There is no past or pending litigation concerning this proposed election date, and this is not a redistricting or an annexation," Bartlett wrote in his letter.

The State Board of Elections upheld the results of the Nov. 4 elections for the District 1 race on Dec. 19, but ordered a new election for District 6.

That means Jimmy Bryan is scheduled to replace Councilman J.B. Rhodes on the City Council.

Rhodes said Tuesday that he had instructed his lawyer to file an appeal to the Wake County Superior Court, and that he thought the appeal had been filed Tuesday.

On Wednesday, his lawyer Louis Jordan, said that he had not filed an appeal and that he was following his client's instructions.

Rhodes then told the News-Argus that he wanted an appeal filed, and if Jordan wouldn't file it, he would find another lawyer who would.

It takes a little longer to hold new elections in Wayne County, because it is one of 44 North Carolina counties required to get clearance with the U.S. Department of Justice for election changes. Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act was intended to stop states that were making it difficult, or impossible, for blacks to vote.