Trump sanctuary city idea could help migrants stay in US

  NC legislators propose bill to make ride-sharing safer after SC student killed

  Panthers visit State House, some senators not convinced on bill

  Another deputy seeking back pay from Columbus Co., says acting sheriff didn’t have authority to fire him

  Voting along party lines, Columbus County elections board decides Jody Greene was not domiciled in county

  State House passes bill on sheriffs working with ICE; NC Sheriff’s Association opposes it

Continued Coverage

  Columbus County elections board hears protest of 2018 sheriff’s race, testimony to continue Thursday

  NCGOP Chairman, others indicted in federal corruption probe

2nd woman recounts unwanted touching by Joe Biden

  Absentee voting opens in North Carolina’s 9th district

  Acting sheriff fired deputies despite uncertain election results

  Trump border emergency survives as House veto override fails

Wrightsville Beach license plate bill filed in General Assembly

The General Assembly is moving the process along to create specialty license plates for the Town of Wrightsville Beach. House Bill 449 gives the NC Division of Motor Vehicles authorization to create four specialty registration plates in 2019.

Though Mueller’s report has been completed, debate continues

Mueller's findings absolve Trump on the question of colluding with Russia but don't entirely remove the legal threats the president and his associates are facing.

  Columbus County BOE sets hearing in disputed sheriff’s race

The board was required by the North Carolina State Board of Elections to hold a hearing into the election protest of Gloria Smith and report back findings by April 5.

  Mueller report: Barr says Mueller finds no evidence of Trump-Russia conspiracy

Attorney General William Barr has given Congress the eagerly anticipated summary of the “principal conclusions” of special counsel Robert Mueller’s two-year Russia investigation.

  State board sends sheriff’s election protest back to Columbus County, requires officials to take up residency issue

  NCSBE wants ‘fresh start’ in Bladen County, declines to appoint former county elections board members

  NC House unanimously supports bill named after fallen Trooper Kevin Conner

  NC House approves bill to adopt the North Carolina Azalea Festival the state’s official azalea festival

NCSBE hearing on Columbus Co. sheriff’s race rescheduled as board considers sending matter back to county

NC Senate passes bill with tougher punishments for thieves who target pharmacies for opioids

  Protecting your voice: Restoring voter confidence in the wake of election fraud

After election fraud put the national spotlight on Southeastern North Carolina, WECT Investigates took a look at how other Cape Fear area counties fared in 2018.

  NC9 Special Election: Final list of candidates determined

The stage is set for the new election in North Carolina’s 9th congressional district.

  Senate rejects Trump border emergency as Republicans defect

The Republican-run Senate rejected President Donald Trump’s declaration of a national emergency at the southwest border on Thursday.

  Beto O’Rourke enters 2020 race attempting bipartisan appeal

Weeks of teasing an announcement are behind him, but O'Rourke now must prove whether the energy he brought to the Texas campaign will resonate on a much larger stage.

Bills from Wilmington-area lawmakers pass state House committees

Three bills sponsored by legislators from southeastern North Carolina took steps forward Wednesday, receiving approval from committees in the state House of Representatives.

  Search warrants indicate SBI tailed Dowless during 2018 election

Months before his absentee activities would make national headlines, Leslie McCrae Dowless was being followed by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation.

  McCrae Dowless received absentee ballot data from Columbus County

Newly-surfaced documents show how Leslie McCrae Dowless, the man indicted for election fraud in Bladen County, was also active in neighboring Columbus County.

NC House committee backs bill that would ban holding phone while driving

Distracted driving dangers are getting revisited in North Carolina, where lawmakers are advancing a prohibition on hand-held cellphone use in the name of reducing fatalities and potentially reining in insurance rates.

Pelosi: Impeaching Trump ‘just not worth it’

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is setting a high bar for impeachment of President Donald Trump, saying he is “just not worth it” even as some on her left flank clamor to start proceedings.

  NC sued over transgender surgery benefit; Treasurer Folwell responds

North Carolina’s State Treasurer is responding to a lawsuit filed over the state’s treatment of transgender people. State employees argue in a lawsuit filed Monday that their health plan violated federal law and their constitutional rights by dropping coverage of medically necessary procedures.

Trump reviving his border wall fight with $8.6 billion budget request

President Donald Trump proposed a record $4.7 trillion federal budget for 2020 on Monday, relying on optimistic 3.1 percent economic growth projections alongside accounting shuffles and steep domestic cuts to bring future spending into promised balance in 15 years.

  Trump’s latest budget ignores deficits that have driven U.S. debt above $22 trillion

Treasury Department figures show a 77 percent spike in the deficit over the first four months of the budget year, driven by falling revenues and steady growth in spending.

  Wilmington’s municipal elections to cost 20 percent more this year

Wilmington won’t be alone — Wrightsville Beach and Kure Beach will also see increases thanks to changes the county is making.

Fifth arrest made on election-related crimes connected to NC-9 investigation

Two women have now been arrested on election-related crimes connected to the investigation into election fraud in North Carolina’s 9th District.

  Manafort sentenced to nearly 4 years in prison

He was convicted in August of eight felony counts for tax fraud and other financial crimes and faced up to 24 years in prison.

NC House moving forward on video telecasts of sessions after 115-1 vote

The public would be able to see sessions of North Carolina House of Representatives under a bill filed Wednesday by Rep. Brenden Jones (R-Columbus) and two other legislators.

  North Korea said to be rebuilding structures at rocket site

Dismantling parts of the long-range rocket launch facility was among several steps North Korea took last year amid diplomatic talks with the United States and South Korea.

Trump pushed staff to give Ivanka Trump security clearance, report says

President Donald Trump tried to pressure top aides to approve a security clearance for his daughter Ivanka Trump, according to a CNN report.

  Hillary Clinton says she won’t run for president in 2020

Former secretary of state and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said unequivocally that she is not running for president following her failed run in 2016.

Ex-acting AG Matthew Whitaker leaves Justice Department

Whitaker was replaced last month when William Barr was confirmed as attorney general. He became a counselor in the associate attorney general's office.

  New 9th district election, Bladen County re-dos scheduled

It will be September, if not November, before we know who will serve in North Carolina’s 9th congressional district.

  House Democrats launch aggressive new Trump probe

Democrats launched a sweeping new probe of President Donald Trump on Monday, an aggressive investigation that threatens to shadow the president through the 2020 election season with inquiries into his White House, campaign and family businesses.

  Former Colorado Gov. Hickenlooper joins 2020 presidential race

John Hickenlooper is the second governor to enter the sprawling field and is trying to cast himself as a pragmatist who can also take on President Donald Trump.

  Trump claims Cohen hearing may have hurt North Korea results

The U.S. and North Korea previously offered contradictory accounts of why last week's summit in Vietnam broke down, though both pointed to American sanctions as a sticking point.

  Sanders returns to NY roots, says he can defeat Trump

Bernie Sanders kicked off his presidential campaign Saturday miles from the rent-controlled apartment where he grew up in Brooklyn and forcefully made the case that he is nothing like fellow New Yorker Donald Trump.

  Town commissioner at odds with Bladen sheriff, connected to 9th district figure, voluntarily closes electronic gaming business to avoid raid

The criminal and civil matters have stretched on for years, and the disagreement between a Dublin town commissioner and the Bladen County Sheriff came up during the state's election fraud investigation. But now, at least one chapter is closed.

  NCSBE hearing into Columbus County sheriff’s race postponed; attorneys allowed to gather more evidence

The new date for the hearing is March 18.

Senate confirms acting EPA chief for permanent role

The Senate on Thursday confirmed former coal industry lobbyist Andrew Wheeler to lead the Environmental Protection Agency.

Gun background check bill passes House, heads to Senate

The bill would close a loophole that allows unlicensed gun sellers to avoid performing background checks on their customers.

  Trump, Kim summit collapses amid failure to reach deal

Both leaders left their Vietnam meeting early and canceled a planned signing ceremony.

  State elections board to schedule new NC9 election, discuss Columbus County Sheriff protest

The roughly 788,000 people of North Carolina’s 9th congressional district will soon have a date to mark on their calendars for the special election for the seat.

  Trump, Kim dive into nuclear talks, looking for ‘right deal’

The two men continued offering hopeful words as talks began anew at their second summit on curbing Pyongyang's pursuit of nuclear weapons, a problem that has bedeviled generations of leaders.

  Michael Cohen casts Trump as a ‘conman’ who directed lies and cover-ups

Michael Cohen begins a three-year prison sentence in May after he pleaded guilty to lying to Congress in 2017 and committing campaign finance violations while he was working for Trump.

  Central figure in election fraud investigation indicted on seven charges

McCrae Dowless has been indicted on seven charges in connection to an investigation into absentee ballot irregularities in the NC District 9 general election.

Cohen says he will tell ‘my story’ in public hearing

President Donald Trump's former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, said Tuesday that the American people can decide "exactly who is telling the truth" when he testifies Wednesday to the House Oversight and Reform committee.

House OKs Democrats’ bill blocking Trump emergency on wall

Democrats ignored a veto threat and rammed legislation through the House Tuesday that would stymie President Donald Trump’s bid for billions of extra dollars for his border wall.

Sen. Britt will not seek GOP nomination in new 9th Congressional District election

Sen. Danny Earl Britt (R-Columbus, Robeson) says he will not seek the GOP nomination in the upcoming Ninth Congressional District election ordered by the NC Board of Elections.

Chief deputy serving as sheriff despite settlement agreement

Deputy Chief Aaron Herring is running the Columbus County Sheriff’s Office, according to the Whiteville News Reporter.

NC9 fallout: Candidates look ahead to running in local races, again

The races for Bladen County Commission District 3, Bladen County Soil and Water Conservation District Supervisor and U.S. House of Representatives District 9 will now be re-run. The NCSBE is expected to vote on a schedule in the coming weeks.

  Mark Harris announces he will not run in NC District 9 special election

Harris, who was the unofficial winner of the 9th District election in November, made the announcement just days after a four-day hearing into alleged election fraud held by the North Carolina State Board of Elections.

Trump, Kim facing big issues after big welcome in Hanoi

Although many experts are skeptical Kim will give up the nuclear weapons he likely sees as his best guarantee of continued rule, there was a palpable, carnival-like excitement among many in Hanoi as the final preparations were made for the meeting.

N Carolina colleges won’t confirm student IDs OK for voting

North Carolina colleges and universities won't guarantee under criminal penalty that student identifications meet the state's requirements for voting, raising doubts about whether thousands of young adults could be blocked from the ballot box

  Gov. Cooper gives State of the State address

Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper is pressing for lawmakers to expand Medicaid, increase public education funding and help rural North Carolina with more aid following Hurricane Florence.

State will monitor new elections in Bladen County

The hearing into election fraud in parts of North Carolina’s 9th congressional district might be over — but the work in Bladen County is just beginning.

State records contradict sheriff’s candidate’s address history

Documents unearthed through a subpoena appear to show contradictory information about when Columbus County Sheriff candidate Jody Greene lived in that county. Greene's residency is the subject of an ongoing challenge to his legal eligibility to serve as sheriff.

Former Gov. Pat McCrory announces he will not run for 9th District seat

Former Gov. Pat McCrory announced Monday he will not to run for the seat in North Carolina’s 9th congressional district.

  Democrat announces another run after new House election called in NC

The Democratic candidate in the nation’s last undecided congressional race will run for the 9th district seat again now that a new election has been called.

Judge strikes down NC voter ID law OK’d by voters

The judge sided Friday with the state NAACP, which argued last year’s edition of the General Assembly that voted to put amendments to the North Carolina Constitution on the ballot was illegally constituted due to racially gerrymandered districts.

  NC9 hearing day 4: State board unanimously votes to hold new election

The state board voted 5-0 to hold a new election for the 9th Congressional district seat, Bladen County Commission District 3, and Bladen County’s Soil and Water Conservation District supervisor. The board did not set a schedule for when the election would happen.

  Democrats prepare resolution against Trump’s declaration

Democrats and some Republicans say there is no emergency at the border. They say Trump is improperly declaring one to work around Congress' rejection of the higher funds for the wall.

  Day 3 of NC9 hearing: Son of Mark Harris says he found McCrae Dowless suspicious; Red Dome leader continues testimony

The North Carolina State Board of Elections’ hearing drags on with no end in sight as new information emerges about exactly who was suspicious of the absentee ballot activity in Bladen County, and when they became aware.

House Democrats’ measure blocking Trump emergency declaration coming Friday

House Democrats will file a resolution Friday aimed at blocking the national emergency declaration that President Donald Trump has issued to help finance his wall along the Southwest border.

  Trump says he has ‘absolute right’ to declare emergency

President Donald Trump declared Tuesday that he would prevail over a multistate lawsuit challenging his emergency declaration to pay for a U.S.-Mexico border wall.

  NC9 hearing day 2: Witness indicates early vote totals leaked, Red Dome leader testifies

Day two of the North Carolina State Elections Board hearing into possible election fraud in District 9.

Boy raises money for border wall with hot chocolate stand

The 7-year-old’s parents say the mixed reaction to the stand has only “fired him up,” and despite criticism, he’s glad his efforts have made some people happy.

  NC9 hearing: McCrae Dowless, man at the center of the investigation into election fraud, refuses to testify as state presents evidence

An evidentiary hearing is underway at the North Carolina State Bar as the state board of elections weeds through the results of its election fraud investigation.

  With hearing set to begin, a look back at the election fraud investigation

The North Carolina State Board of Elections will take up the query into alleged fraud in the state’s 9th district and beyond on Monday, Feb. 18, but the road to the Raleigh hearing has been long and winding.

Paul Manafort faces more than 19 years in prison, court filing says

Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort could spend more than 19 years in prison on tax and bank fraud charges.