AP NEWS

Election fraudster vouches for GOP’s Mark Harris: ‘He’s the one getting the wrong end of the deal’

February 18, 2019

A woman’s bombshell testimony Monday about her role in absentee ballot fraud in a North Carolina House race ended with her vouching for the Republican candidate linked to the scheme.

In sworn testimony before the State Board of Elections, Lisa Britt said that what she did was wrong and that only one person in this mess was innocent.

“He’s the one getting the wrong end of the deal here and that is Mr. Mark Harris,” she said.

Mr. Harris, whose Nov. 6 election win over Democrat Dan McCready hangs in the balance, watched in apparently stunned dismay.

Based on the evidence presented at the hearing, the five-member State Board of Elections will decide whether to certify the Nov. 6 results or order a new election to fill the 9th District seat that’s been empty for nearly three months.

Because of alleged absentee ballot fraud, the previous board refused to certify the results with Mr. Harris leading by 905 votes. An investigation ensued.

The hearing to present findings of the probe was scheduled for two days. Ms. Britt was the first witness called and spent nearly two hours on the stand.

She detailed how she and others were paid to collect absentee ballots.

In North Carolina, it is illegal for anyone other than a voter or their close relative to mail in an absentee ballot.

But that is exactly what they did, said Ms. Britt, a paroled felon.

The operation she detailed was run by political operative Leslie McCrae Dowless, who was hired by the Red Dome consulting firm that worked for the Harris campaign.

Ms. Britt said Mr. Harris was not personally involved.

“I think Mr. Harris was completely clueless as to what was going on,” she said.

Ms. Britt, whose mother was previously married to Mr. Dowless, said Mr. Dowless instructed her to deny any wrongdoing and invoke the 5th Amendment right not to testify at the hearing.

Ms. Britt did not follow that instruction.

“Did I know that I was doing wrong? No, ma’am. But I do feel that I have done wrong,” she said under questioning by Election Director Kim Strach.

The testimony was part of the evidence that Ms. Strach said would show “a coordinated, unlawful and substantially resourced absentee ballot scheme” and efforts to “obstruct this investigation and the testimony provided at this hearing.”