Those voting in North Carolina for the November election shouldn't vote twice, according to a Thursday press release from the N.C. Board of Elections.
President Donald Trumpvisited Wilmington on Sep. 2 to commemorate the city as an American World War II Heritage City. At the event, he said North Carolinians should test the voting system by both submitting an absentee ballot and attempting to vote in person.
“Let them send it in and let them go vote, and if their system’s as good as they say it is, then obviously they won’t be able to vote," he said at the event. "If it isn’t tabulated, they’ll be able to vote,” Trump said.
However, voting twice is illegal in North Carolina. In accordance with state law, attempting to vote twice or encouraging someone to do so is a Class I felony.
This preexisting law directly contradicts the president’s comments, creating confused voters and an increase in predicted workload for polling staff.
In response to the president’s statement, Karen Brinson Bell, the executive director of the North Carolina State Board of Elections, released a message reminding voters of the law.
In the press release, Bell said voters can check the status of their absentee ballot by contacting their county board of elections, using the State Board's Voter Search Tool or signing up for BallotTrax, a newly created service that ensures accurate tracking of voter ballots.
"The State Board conducts audits after each election that check voter history against ballots cast and would detect if someone tries to vote more than once in an election," Bell said in the release.
Ferrel Guillory, professor at the UNC Hussman School of Journalism and Media, said if people vote twice in the election, it could cause confusion for poll workers.