North Carolina election fraud hearing heats up

A hearing about potential voting fraud in North Carolina's Ninth District continues and one woman shares how Trump's border wall would affect her property.
21:33 | 02/20/19

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Transcript for North Carolina election fraud hearing heats up
And yeah. Everybody welcome to the brick and remind Devin Dwyer with our political reporter Johnny for Hobart Coker stand warm. On this icy and snowy Wednesday across town at the government here Washington is shut down today. It's very quiet with the storm but there's a lot of action happening in politics today at the Supreme Court which was in session today we'll get to all of that. Coming up but do want to start with a story you may not have been paying attention to. If you were at following closely the 2018 mid term elections believe it or not. There's still one congressional race. That is yet to be decided it's down a North Carolina it's the ninth congressional district. There Johnny were Holbrook has been following this closely this is all about a controversy. Over a voter fraud allegations of voter fraud Johnny in fact today a past few days. The state board of elections in North Carolina has been holding hearings evidentiary hearings to try to decide whether or not. They need to do a do over there in a congressional race what's the latest right now. Well so the series and going on since Monday. And basically what investigators have been doing have been laying out this entire. Alleged election fraud scheme which as you know thrown the entire election into doubt they may have to call a new election. And hearing from witnesses and prosecutors have have kind of been laying out what exactly went wrong in this race and it's a sister crazy story that keeps getting gray yeah it was a very. Close race between mark Haris the Republican gimmick read the Democrat or Republican seat a Republican did win in this case by 905 votes. But as you've been following this is not without any controversy there's Mark Harris you see pictured back let's bring in. ABC affiliate reporter joining Kaplan who's a political reporter down their North Carolina WT VD who's been following the case they are on the ground Jonah you bend. Tracking the hearing today for those of us who have it in our viewers who haven't been watching this as closely. I bring us up to speed on the latest him what do you think the chances are they actually hold another election in that district. Support to remember this affects more than 700000. People living in North Carolina I mean where re. Months away you know removed from Election Day we are six weeks into when he nineteen were two weeks past the C of the union address. And 700000 people. Don't have a congressman. Right now the state board of elections really have to decide one was there fraud that went on over the course of the campaign tools. Did that fraud if it happened have a significant impact that it heats hit the results of the election was there enough fraud. That if it wasn't there well would the outcome still have been the same. That's what they have to wait right now and every day we're learning a little bit more just incredible revealing testimonies. The first day we heard. From some of these workers who were on the ground in Lee County which is a rule. Southern county in North Carolina. She testified that she was illegally signing as a witness on absentee ballots illegally collecting them and mailing them in yesterday we heard from. The founder of the consulting firm political consulting firm who hired the man McRae Dallas was accused of running this team and. Investigators here in the north Carolina state board of elections they've been very clear. They say their evidence points to a coordinated unlawful and substantially resource he. To illegally collect absentee ballots. Right I'll literally just walked out of the courtroom. The big witness today is mark Harrison son John and as it mean just again new things every day. Yeah it's it's incredible I wanna act and we want to come back to this issue with John John Avery its bid itself out some really fascinating stuff David Johnny wanna. Ask you whether you think that you know what what. What is this board actually investigating. Is this a criminal investigation could people potentially. Go to jail based on some of the evidence a journalist talking about that they now say they have. Right it was election fraud here right we'll definitely the man at the center of this whole scandal that was allegedly running the scheme using his McRae Dallas this political operative. He is definitely at risk of going to jail because in North Carolina I'm sure as John and cousin John I've been going back and forth on Twitter all day about this is this is this has been a truly. A pretty interesting day but handling ballots and collecting absentee ballots and and turning them and is a felony in North Carolina you can go to prison about that. I'm now that's a separate issue from whether or not a new election would actually be called but today and the Mike and over the last couple days like John is insane we have been learning about the team. Broad nature of this it really was paid. And Jonah as they gather this evidence they hear the testimony and as you said the state board of elections and officially executive director basically outright said there was a coordinated scheme here. What. Sort of factors are they winning wind it's deciding to have an election what will tip the scale. To make this actually happened. We have to accept really one of two narratives the one from supporters of the Democrat Tim McCready. Is if there was any fraud which there seems to be banned it in validates the whole race it doesn't matter what the margin of victory was. Any fraud means it's an invalid election we have to do it over. Republicans. And supporters of mark Harris and say look we understand and acknowledge that there was something nefarious going off. It shouldn't happen people should be punished for it. But if the margin of victory 905 votes there hasn't been any evidence yet to suggest. That there were more than 905 votes that were either withheld or tampered with. Or changed in any way in fact they say that the voter intent had always been there are nothing changed we're just talking about how these ballots were illegally collected. So the board really has to again decide. Was there fraud and was it enough to taint the election. Four out of five of these members and it's a five member bipartisan board. Three Democrats two Republicans because the governor in North Carolina is a Democrat so if four out of five of them agree that. There was too much fraud that it taints the entire outcome of the race. They will call for a new election. And of course Johnny this also complicates the Republican mark harris' standing among North Carolina voters particularly in light of the testimony we heard today that John was talking about his son as testified this morning mark harris' own son. Went on the record said you know I actually told my dad. That this we were some suspect practices going on in the rate which runs. Completely counter to a comment on Mark Harris made. Last year reason no one raised red flags to me about about record doubts but now you have a son and I believe he's still testifying now saying look. You know I looked at some numbers from a 2016 race a sub that there were some abnormalities. In this rural and and blatant county. And I brought those concerns to to my parents my father. And said look in our I think there may be something weird going on here he should definitely investigate this. Then the end of the day at the end of the day he said this is my father's decision and he made the decision to hire me. I worked Thanksgiving dinner this year for sure and a fascinating race the only race from the torn eighteen mid term elections still outstanding. Go follow join a Caplan on Twitter if you don't know already. Are getting the FTV friendly reporter down in North Carolina thank you Jennifer your reporting we'll be back with him sure later this week and appreciate. Your analysis Johnny is that. Thank you so much a meantime some big news coming out of the Supreme Court shifting gears a little bit today. The Supreme Court ruled in a unanimous opinion today on a case at a Indiana that the eighth amendment's protection against excessive fines. Applies nationwide believe it or not they hadn't incorporated that are right from the bill of rights all the states they did so today in the case of this man Tyson's hands. I think the and I think we have a picture of Tyson 37 year old former OP or addict who was convicted a few years back you see Tyson in the right with his attorney. Wesley hottest. Who argued the case Tyson tents was tried convicted of a small drug offense and the state. Of Indiana seized his 42000. Dollar Land Rover. While ties in ten said that was in excessive punishment to take his car. And today he won before the Supreme Court and we're joined now by Tyson's attorney. Wesley hot it who joins us from Seattle via Skype to serve great to see you was there on the day he. You argue this case so congratulations. Give us your reaction to the court's decision today. Well thanks for Albanians very gracious that he congratulate us. The court today unanimously held. That the federal constitutional protection against excessive fines. Must be applied by state and local authorities. What that means is that state trial judges now have the power indeed beauty. To ensure a nationwide standard. Of excessive nests where police and prosecutors. Although they have the power to take people's property. There are limits and judges have been directed to enforce those. This this is it's sort of striking because this is such big business across the country. A year you do organization that you are part of an Institute for Justice actually crunch some of the numbers we have them we can put them up here. From just a few years ago the 26 states including the District of Columbia. Gathered seized basically in funds and property more than 254. Million dollars. Just in that year alone this is a huge business. And this case Wesley that this state of Indiana seized Tyson tens Land Rover 42000 dollars because they said. That it was actually a weapon used in a crime a tool used in a crime. And that they were taking it off the streets they were taking it out on him they were simply removing Ive tool. But you argued successfully to the contrary that this would was actually part of his personal property. Well that's right I mean look the facts here where that Tyson who lives in rural grant county Indiana. True. At the urging of a confidential informant drove to meet with some undercover officers. And sold them a small amount apparently it was birth. Less than 400 dollars total. And because of that. Really incidental a vet that he drove there I think any investment in an our and a role koehlke. Might choose drive rapid and cake nonexistent transit or try to walk in the aisles. I'm the government in Indiana decided that they could take his 40000 dollar vehicle kind of secondary punishment. And here five years later Tyson is still. Fighting back tickets after giving everything that was asked. He plead guilty. He served his time. Fees that were imposed on he's gotten clean he's holding jobs. And yes though the government is kicking him while he's out making all of those harder. This is the dirty secret of the American criminal justice's. The civil or pitcher allows the government to strip people of their property they've committed crimes. T allows the government mr. people who property even without inflicting them up cried yet eight. That. And and just interrupt you there that that's the striking thing that many of our viewers might not know that ends and a lot of these cases of civil lasted for parts of the governor can. Government can simply take your property without. I hearing without extensive due process here's what justice Ginsburg Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote today in the opinion of the court her first opinion since that. Cancer surgery back in December she said the protection against excessive fines. Guards against abuses of government's punitive or criminal law enforcement authority to safeguard we hold he's fundamental tore scheme of ordered liberty with deep roots. In our history. In tradition. Ot M Weston before we let you go I what what's the next step here for states you were talking about how this is going on unchecked for years in many places. What will states now have to do what steps when they have to implement in the wake of this decision. Well there's a practical impact. And there is a more and he months impact on the law on the practical impact is that Indiana and the three other states that currently project. The excessive fines protection we'll have to start enforcing it. But the more nuanced and the long term impact that we hoped to litigate Wendy and friends in court is what is an excessive fine or forfeiture. And I think that the Supreme Court today announced unanimously that he cares about that question and it's going to police. Civil forfeiture in the future. We look forward to bring the cases that asked exactly where that line it is. Yet they didn't say they didn't set that line in this case they didn't put that language in in the opinion as you said very broad. Takes a much Wesley how to do have to ask you before let you go did is Eric Tyson tens gonna get that Land Rover back. We'll see. It depends aren't what the state. Indiana. Wants to do you do they want to fight for this truck or they want to just give it back to Tyson. I'm and it and so what the Indiana Supreme Court wants to do in light of the US supreme court's ruling. Whatever it takes a stand shoulder shoulder price in the lecture he gets struck back. All right Wesley how to joining us via Skype from Seattle be the council of Tyson tends the Indiana man who won today before the Supreme Court setting. In a unanimous opinion a new rule nationwide. Did pretty net in place a check against a state power to seize private property or thinks. To him for join and us moving on now to the continuing fallout over the emergency declaration the president trump issued. I just a week or so ago declaring an emergency at the border in invoking his power to seize federal government funds to build that southern border wall as you've heard sixteen states are now suing the administration. So our number of landowners in southern Texas who live along the border who say their rights will be infringed upon. When this border wall is constructed and we're joined now live from south Texas by one of those land overseer vet. A guy time who is one of three party to a separate lawsuit against president trump her house actually overlooks the Rio Grande river which is right there on the border with Mexico you that thank you so much. For joining us today and would love to get sure your tape why you're joining this lawsuit. Because I don't believe it can emergency period it is and an emergency action be. Adler every AM here today in a arrow and I am not scared to be out here and there's no. Real emergency yes there is. Eagles crafting I personally haven't bullying on my property I see on the news I'm sure there is little going on me. But not the widening we'll go from one point of order to the other corner order little to do better things to secure border. That we received some pictures here your house which is right on the border and obviously we can see behind you the river there that's the Rio grunts on the other side of the river that's Mexico. Shut put out just here clippings if he can't point point out where you are more we're seen. Well right now I. About probably. Sixty feet away from actually the riverbank and either river right here there's been peeled a crack and Mexico. And are well. So spring. But there's peeled right there and you constantly hear the tractors plowing and you see people out there work will. But better than that at father history now. And where were the wall be built in the lawsuit you said that did the government actually already contacted you last year. I'm asking for permission to come on your property and prepare did it begin construction where behind you would would they be building this wall. It wouldn't be behind me actually it wit me greater friend Irene which is actually. That way. Which is sort out. So it would still be it would still be on your property sort of dividing your property them which your for your property runs up to the river does it. Yet that does have is the way. From what I'm hearing from other places they're taking. On how the house does not fit I'm. Computer didn't even get half a mile away it that 430. I eat away from river. While so well let me ask you a little bit about. You know what the president Harry. What the president has been saying you that he obviously it's called this an emergency. Bob the administration has argued that for the greater good data wall is necessary for national security reasons. Where you're standing. It what do you say to that argument that a little inconvenience to you may be some construction. Over a little while is for the greater good of the country to to keep us safe is that something that holds water with you. Now because hours true and he would be turning to change pilot. He would be trying to work to give incentives to peep or to actually joining the Border Patrol in securing our borders he. Their budget will let it lap you're that they got back to head. Though target and emerge in New York petting budget to a department that secure your border. Yeah out and end it just is a message to him until lawmakers before we let you go. If this does in fact go through and they're successful and starting construction on your property what. What what that means you what what will you do will you have to move. It depends on how much and they actually aren't there at all actually it's 430 I wait Eric just apparent nonwhite. They want. How much property and it it would aren't. And it wouldn't mean everything to keep my dad built this. House. What you're to a bare hand being dying and he worked hard for that house. And it L and has been in our family for generations. So a a a certainly a passionate and very personal fight for you in your family. One of three land owners that are now suing the trump administration. In federal court. Over the land rights that are are part of this border wall story of that guy time thank you so much. For Jordan knows it really important to have your perspective in and fantastic to be able to see firsthand. We're that border wall will go so thank you for joining us we'll continue to follow that story. I finally today back to some 20/20 politics and Johnny were Holbrook is still here with us Johnny. We come out of the holiday weekend with some absolutely incredible fund raising numbers for Bernie Sanders who just got in the race early this week. I give us the least somewhat his campaign is same for how much money neighbors it. Is pretty astounding the first 24 hours since he announced yesterday at around 7 am. Bernie Sanders has raised six million dollars now which to put in perspective the next closest 220 Democrat this cycles Connolly Harris. Trees one point five million in the first 24 hours. Any club which are raised just over a 1001001 48 hours I mean. This truly is is evidence that Bernie Sanders is going to be a formidable candidate this time around even for those that have. You know concerns that he still needs to win back some Democrats after. Sixty and it's incredible and you can see some of the comparisons here on the screen a mean a he's an illegal his own when it comes to fundraising any was. Back in 2012 as well but this just shows that in that support has certainly spent sustained. On and how important is money to bring this earlier menaces who were were pretty far out from the election. Or her for our review I mean we're just under a year away from the from the Iowa Caucuses from the first nominating process but money is a very you know it's a very important indicator. A how much resources are gonna have going forward and be just how much grassroots support you're going to have so it. 150000. Individuals don't workers across which just goes to the point that this very active base that he has it looks like they're me just as active this time. Grounder to force a lot of the other candidates to spend money as well exactly such as from the divine vision depressing to watch and we should say that the president of the United States is also fund raising himself. Off of Bernie Sanders six million dollar figure he just put out a fundraising or crass warning his supporters. The fundraising prowess of Bernie Sanders show it to be continued Jenny republic thanks for sticking around appreciate it thank you for. Joining us today on this snowy Wednesday and get to see Johnny in the hours are sweater and 017. Here in the briefing room we will be back tomorrow street in fact. And fact that forget Indian remind about a control room that we have a beauty shot. Some of today's festivities here Washington. And we will leave you with this with some sliding up on Capitol Hill. Look like a good time need to get out their little bit later before the rain comes down that's it for today at a briefing room we will see you next time. Yeah.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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