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Did President Trump’s Chief of Staff commit voter fraud in Macon County?

“I don’t want my vote or anyone else’s to be disenfranchised. … Do you realize how inaccurate the voter rolls are, with people just moving around. … Anytime you move, you’ll change your driver’s license, but you don’t call up and say, hey, by the way I’m re-registering.”

— Mark Meadows, at the time White House chief of staff, in an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper, Aug. 16, 2020

A month later, Mark Meadows registered to vote by mail in Macon County, North Carolina at an address located in Scaly Mountain. Not only did Meadows register to vote at the Scaly Mountain location on September 22, 2020, his wife Debra also updated her voter registration to the same address, however, her voter registration was updated on September 19. Macon County Register of Deeds shows the property currently listed as Meadows’ address, a 14-by-62-foot mobile home, as being sold on September 2, 2021, to a Kenneth Charles Abele for just over $100,000. Both Abele and the property owner prior to Abele told reporters Meadows has not lived at the property. 

The voter registration forms, which Macon County Board of Director Melanie Thibault confirmed were submitted by mail ask for a residential address — “where you physically live” — and are signed “under penalty of perjury.” 

According to reports from Charles Bethea of the New Yorker, who was the first to report on the alledged voter fraud, Meadows may have never even visited the Scaly Mountain home, let alone lived there. Not only are the Meadows registered to vote at the Scaly Mountain residence, but both Mark and Debra Meadows also voted in the 2020 general election, with Mark listed as voting by absentee ballot; Debra voted early in person.

To register to vote in North Carolina, a citizen must have lived in the county where they are registering and have resided there for at least 30 days before the date of the election, according to the state’s board of elections.

According to Bethea’s piece in the New Yorker, the former owner (unidentified in the article, but listed as Thomas Yarbrough according to Macon County GIS reports) told the New Yorker that Debra Meadows had rented the house once but spent only one or two nights there in 2020; Mark Meadows never stayed at all during that time. When the house was put on the market in the summer of 2020, she said, Meadows never expressed interest in buying it. Abele said that Meadows has not been to the property since he purchased it in September 2021. 

While their physical address was listed at the Scaly Mountain property, the couple’s voter registration included a PO Box located near Asheville as their mailing address. The Po.Box listed was closer to the Asheville apartment Meadows lived in in 2018 — something he said was done to save taxpayers money due to his frequent flights out of the Asheville Airport to go to Washington D.C. 

Both Mark and Debra voted in the March 3, 2020 Primary election under their Transylvania County address. 

During the June 23, 2020 runoff election, Debra Meadows, who both endorsed and heavily campaigned for Lynda Bennett, cast her ballot. However, the home Debra was registered to vote located in Sapphire, NC in Transylvania County, was sold the same year on March 26 — meaning Debra voted at a residence she did not reside at. Mark did not cast a ballot during the runoff election. 

North Carolina voter database has Debra voting under the Transylvania County address beginning in the May 2018 Primary until the June 23, 2020 runoff. During the 2016 November general election, she cast her ballot in Buncombe County, however for the primary that same year she voted in Jackson County. From 2004 until 2016 Debra voted under a Jackson County address. Mark was listed as a legacy voter in Macon County until 1998 and shows voting in person on election in Macon County from 2000 until 2004 when he switched to voting under a Jackson County address. Mark then voted under the Transylvania dress until this November when it switched to the Macon County address in Scaly Mountain. 

In 2021, Meadows purchased a three-story waterfront home of more than 6,000 square feet in South Carolina for nearly $1.6 million. While South Carolina requires that you update your driver’s license within just 10 days with your new address when moving within the state, Meadows is still currently listed to vote at the Scaly Mountain address. 

This isn’t the first time voter registration has come up in Macon County this election cycle. 

State law says voter registration applications must be accurate and that residency refers to “where you physically live.” A voter who purposefully provides inaccurate information could be subject to several months of jail time if found guilty.

Shortly after announcing he would seek election as Macon County Sheriff, candidate Chris Browning announced that he would be withdrawing his candidacy after being informed by the board of elections that his residence is located in Clay County, not Macon County. Browning, who has been registered to vote in Macon County and actively voted in Macon County for decades, said that although he pays his property taxes in in Clay County for both his home and vehicle, he didn’t realize it was actually Clay County. **As previously reported, Browning said that when he purchased the home, he was informed by the Board of Elections that although part of the property was in Clay County, part of the property was in Macon County and he would be eligible to vote in Macon County. 

Browning was temporarily removed from voter rolls in Macon County. 

Browning later announced that he would in fact be running for sheriff and when he filed to run for office, he listed 143 Shady Brook Lane in Franklin as his address. An address he registered for on November 5, 2021. According to records on file in Macon County, the property is owned by Lowell Downs and currently has no permits on the property for construction. However, it appears there is a building located on the property that Browning is claiming to reside in. Similar to Meadows and the million-dollar home he owns vs the 900-foot square foot trailer he listed on his voter registration, county records show that Browning’s home in Clay County, which he still owns, is quite impressive and valued at nearly $400,000. 

2 Comments

  1. Pete Stewart Pete Stewart March 12, 2022

    Still with the TDS Brittany? The story is a hit piece about Mark Meadows but look at your headline. You’re better than this when you want to be.

    • Brittney Lofthouse Brittney Lofthouse Post author | March 15, 2022

      So you don’t think that Mark Meadows allegedly committed voter fraud while serving as President Trump’s COS is a relevant aspect to note?

      That President Trump continues to push a narrative of stolen election and voter fraud… all while the highest ranking member of his administration is being investigated for committing fraud?

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