The Pulse

Chief Justice Beasley concedes election to Newby

By: - December 12, 2020 3:57 pm
North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Cheri Beasley and Justice Paul Newby.

North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Cheri Beasley released a statement today conceding to her opponent Justice Paul Newby, after failing to gain more votes and secure a statewide recount. Beasley called Newby to congratulate him on his advancement to the Chief Justice early today.

After a month-long tussle, the North Carolina GOP has now scored three wins on the state’s high court. Newby, who had been the sole Republican on the court, will be joined by Phil Berger Jr., who’s a Court of Appeals judge, and Tamara Barringer, a former state senator from the 17th district.

Their terms will start January 1, 2021, and are set to expire in eight years.

The seven-justice panel will consist of four Democrats in the majority and the three Republicans who just won a brand new term.

The new Supreme Court is on tap to hear appeals related to redistricting and voting rights, among other issues in the New Year.

Newby will take charge of deciding the administrative services provided by the courts, including how trials will be held. Beasley ordered a halt of non-essential, in-person hearings of all courts effective Monday. Some courts have modified their schedules. All courthouses require anyone who enters the court to wear face coverings and now must allow for social distancing at hearings.

Previously, Beasley requested a statewide machine recount and shortened the gap by 15 votes to 401 votes out of nearly 5.4 million ballots cast, but fell short by 12 in a statewide hand-to-eye recount of 3% of precincts.

Beasley’s campaign released a statement yesterday commending the State Board of Election’s work.

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Yanqi Xu

Yanqi Xu, Courts, Law and Democracy Reporter, came to Policy Watch in December of 2020 from the Investigative Reporting Workshop in D.C., where she combined data and reporting to cover public accountability issues. Yanqi graduated with a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri in 2019. Her multimedia work appeared in PolitiFact and the Columbia Missourian, and was featured on the local NPR and NBC affiliates. Originally from China, Yanqi started her career producing newscasts to tell people what’s going on around the world.