Report: House committee to consider impeachment proceedings against NC secretary of state

by WorldTribune Staff, June 28, 2017

The North Carolina House Rules Committee said it will consider two resolutions that would begin impeachment proceedings against NC Secretary of State Elaine Marshall, Charlotte’s WBTV reports.

In March, state Rep. Chris Millis, a Republican, had “called attention to the fact” that Marshall, a Democrat, was allegedly commissioning notaries public who are not legal residents of the United States, The Associated Press reported.

NC Secretary of State Elaine Marshall

One resolution will establish rules and procedures for impeachment proceedings in the House and the other resolution would establish a committee to investigate allegations of misconduct made against Marshall, the report said.

Millis demanded Marshall’s resignation in March after her office issued commissions to people holding DACA cards, a program started by the Obama administration that allows certain illegal aliens who entered the U.S. as minors to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and eligibility for a work permit.

A notary public witnesses and certifies the signing of important documents, including birth certificates and absentee ballots.

In March, Millis said he would move to impeach Marshall if she did not voluntarily leave office.

A copy of the draft legislation reviewed by WBTV outlined four areas that the proposed investigative committee would examine:

  • “That Secretary of State Elaine F. Marshall granted notary public commissions to several hundred persons who did not ‘(r)eside legally in the United States’ in violation of G.S. 10B-5, and who were not ‘qualified aliens’ in violation of 8 U.S.C. 1621.”
  • “That Secretary of State Elaine F. Marshall granted said notary commissions to ineligible aliens surreptitiously, without means for the public or the General Assembly to have knowledge of such action.”
  • “That Secretary of State Elaine F. Marshall made untrue statements to the press and public involving the grant of these notary commissions to ineligible aliens.”
  • “That senior staff of the office of the Secretary of State, in furtherance of Secretary Elaine F. Marshall’s actions, misrepresented the facts surrounding the granting of these notary commissions to ineligible aliens to the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee on General Government of the North Carolina General Assembly.”

Calls on June 27 to two numbers listed for spokesmen in Marshall’s office went to voicemails that were not set up, the report said.

Meanwhile, the NC House voted 76-43 on June 28 to override Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of the Republican-led budget plan.

North Carolina was a battleground state in the 2016 presidential election. Although its legislature is overwhelmingly Republican and the state was carried by Donald Trump, Democrat Roy Cooper was narrowly elected governor in a year the state’s HB2 “bathroom bill” made it the target of celebrity ridicule.

The override, which passes the bill into law, came three days before the spending plan takes effect July 1 – affecting tax rates, teacher and state-worker salaries, state-agency budgets, jurisdiction over criminal suspects and more, the Raleigh News & Observer reported.

The Senate had voted to override Cooper’s veto on June 27.

Cooper argued the budget’s income tax cuts would “cause the state to fail to fund promised teacher salary increases in future years.”

Rep. Nelson Dollar, a Republican and the House’s senior budget writer, disputed the Democratic governor’s assessment. “We have carefully examined the governor’s veto message, we’ve determined that the appropriate course of action for the people of the state of North Carolina is to overturn the governor’s veto,” Dollar said. “This budget follows in that trend that we have established that will keep this state moving forward.”

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