Rusty Jacobs

Political Reporter

Rusty Jacobs is a politics reporter for WUNC. Rusty previously worked at WUNC as a reporter and substitute host from 2001 until 2007 and now returns after a nine-year absence during which he went to law school at Carolina and then worked as an Assistant District Attorney in Wake County.

As a reporter, he has covered a wide array of topics including military affairs, sports, government and damaging storms.

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Rusty Jacobs, WUNC

Updated at 4:05 p.m.

The North Carolina State Board of Elections has voted unanimously in favor of a new election for the contested 9th Congressional District.

Rusty Jacobs, WUNC

The state election board's hearing into possible vote tampering in North Carolina's 9th Congressional District race featured some explosive testimony Tuesday.
 

The star witness was Andy Yates, who founded political his political consultancy, Red Dome Group, in 2013.

Republican Mark Harris hired the Charlotte-area firm in 2017 to oversee his campaign for the 9th District congressional seat.

Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

The state elections board opened its hearing Monday into alleged ballot fraud in North Carolina's 9th Congressional District race. And how it went all depends on whom you ask.

Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

A moment of reckoning has arrived for the newly appointed state elections board. The five-member panel begins an evidentiary hearing Monday into alleged vote tampering in North Carolina's 9th congressional district.

A Marine Corps Honor Guard carries the casket of Congressman Walter Jones, Jr., after his funeral service at St. Peter's Catholic Church, in Greenville, N.C., on February 14, 2019.
Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

Congressman Walter Jones was laid to rest Thursday following a funeral service at St. Peter's Catholic Church in Greenville. The 3rd Congressional District representative died Sunday on his 76th birthday.

Map of the Dorothea Dix Park Master Plan.
dixpark.org

The public last night got to see Raleigh's master plan for Dorothea Dix Park, the 308-acre site of a former state psychiatric hospital.

Specialty license plates are becoming more common in North Carolina.
N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles / N.C. Department of Transportation

Updated Feb. 5 at 9:28 a.m.  

Governor Roy Cooper has asked the Council of State to delay a vote on moving the Division of Motor Vehicles from Raleigh to Rocky Mount. But it's not clear the delay will help Raleigh's cause.

Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

The North Carolina General Assembly got down to business Wednesday as lawmakers prepare for the budget-focused long session. Committee chairs were named and legislators from both parties unveiled their top issues, setting the stage, perhaps, for conflicting priorities.

Attorney David B. Freeman, who represents Mark E. Harris, makes an argument before Senior Resident Superior Court Judge Paul C. Ridgeway during a hearing on Mark E. Harris v. NC State Board of Elections on Tues., Jan. 22, 2019 in Raleigh, N.C.
2019, News & Observer

A judge in Raleigh says he won't step in and declare victory for the Republican in the country's last undecided congressional race amid an investigation into whether his lead was boosted by illegal vote-collection tactics.

Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

North Carolina's 9th congressional district is not the only scene of a disputed election in the state. A trial is scheduled for next month to determine if Columbus County Sheriff Jody Greene has violated state law by taking office.

Graduate student Lindsay Ayling speaks to a couple dozens activists about outgoing Chancellor Carol Folt's decision to remove the Silent Sam pedestal from campus.
Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

Updated at 8:30 p.m.

North Carolina's flagship public university plans to remove the pedestal where a now-toppled Confederate statue once stood on a main campus quad, its chancellor said Monday.

Ballot Box
Wikipedia

Republican Jody Greene unseated then-Columbus County Sheriff and Democrat Lewis Hatcher by just 34 votes this fall. Several protests of those results are pending with the state Board of Elections.

Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

Six local chapters of the North Carolina NAACP are suing the state legislature over its new voter ID law.

State lawmakers voted on Dec. 19, 2018 to override North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper's veto of voter ID. The move means photo ID at the polls is now law.
Jeff Tiberii / WUNC

The Republican-controlled state Legislature steamrolled Governor Roy Cooper's veto of a newly crafted bill requiring a photo ID for in-person voting in North Carolina.

Jeff Tiberii / WUNC

Governor Roy Cooper said he would not exercise his veto power if the Republican-controlled General Assembly would just remove one part of its recently passed legislation on the makeup of the state elections board and ethics commission.

Senate Rules Committee meeting on Wednesday, December 12, 2018, to discuss a new measure to reconstitute the state elections board.
Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

The North Carolina General Assembly has passed legislation to reconfigure the state elections board.

A sample ballot for the 2018 midterm elections
Jason deBruyn / WUNC

State Republican lawmakers are pushing a bill to re-constitute the state elections and ethics boards, again.

After Democrat Roy Cooper won the governor's race in 2017, the General Assembly's GOP leadership changed the law to combine the elections and ethics boards and assume more control over appointing members.

File photo of NC GOP Executive Director Dallas Woodhouse.
Adhiti Bandlamudi / WUNC

The North Carolina Republican Party's executive director has seen enough to warrant a new election in the 9th Congressional District.

Madeline Moore throws snowballs Sunday, Dec. 9, 2018, in Greensboro, N.C.
Lynn Hey / For WUNC

Updated 12:25 p.m. | Dec. 10, 2018

North Carolina has seen a year's worth of snow in little more than a day, according to Governor Roy Cooper.

File photo of NC GOP Executive Director Dallas Woodhouse.
Adhiti Bandlamudi / WUNC

State GOP Chair Dallas Woodhouse said he wants the state elections board to fully lay out the facts in its investigation of North Carolina's 9th Congressional District race between Republican Mark Harris and Democrat Dan McCready.

A sample ballot for the 2018 midterm elections
Jason deBruyn / WUNC

The state elections board will hold a hearing this month on possible vote tampering in North Carolina's 9th Congressional District race. The key question is whether there's enough evidence to warrant a new election.

Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

The only thing that  is certain about the North Carolina Elections and Ethics Enforcement Board is that it is mired in uncertainty. Its chairman just stepped down, a congressional race is in limbo, and a court-ordered change to the makeup of the board was postponed.

A sign at the entrance of the Fayetteville Works site on N.C. 87 in Bladen County, North Carolina.
Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality is accepting public comment over the next few weeks on a proposed consent order with a chemical company responsible for polluting the Cape Fear River and private wells near its Fayetteville plant.

Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

Around 200 protesters gathered Tuesday morning in Raleigh's Bicentennial Mall across Jones Street from the North Carolina General Assembly.

State Rep. David Lewis (R-Harnett) talks with reporters after a session of the Joint Legislative Elections Oversight Committee on Monday, Nov. 26, 2018.
Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

A joint committee of state lawmakers met Monday to discuss voter ID legislation. The meeting comes ahead of Tuesday's special session of the North Carolina General Assembly.

OWASA's Jones Ferry Road water treatment plant, in Carrboro, N.C.
Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

It has been a tough couple of years for the Orange County water utility that serves 80,000-plus customers in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro area.

Screen shot: Senator Phil Berger "Protect Voter ID"
Phil Berger

Now what? That might be the question for many North Carolinians after voters approved a constitutional amendment requiring photo identification at the polls.

Former North Carolina governors, from left to right: Jim Hunt, Jim Martin, Make Easley, Bev Perdue and Pat McCrory joined forces to oppose the constitutional amendments.
Jeff Tiberii / WUNC

North Carolina voters sent two of six constitutional amendments backed by the North Carolina General Assembly's Republican majority to defeat by wide margins.

One amendment would have transferred power to fill judicial vacancies from the governor's office to the legislature. The other amendment would have restructured the state ethics and elections board and given lawmakers the power to appoint its members.

Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

Sheriff Donnie Harrison grew up poor on his family's Martin County farm and says he knew from the age of eight or nine he wanted to pursue a career in law enforcement.

At 21, he joined the North Carolina State Highway Patrol and served 26 years. He was assigned to Wake County and never left.

In 2002, running as a Republican, Harrison unseated Wake's first African-American sheriff, John Baker, with a one percent margin of victory.

He has sailed through three elections since then, gaining respect on a range of issues.

Smithfield Foods promised to cut emissions.
humanesociety.org

A major pork producer in North Carolina will address the industry's vulnerability to climate change. The move has won praise from one environmental advocacy group but scorn from another.

The Environmental Defense Fund applauded Smithfield Foods for the company's 10-year plan to capture 85,000 tons of methane per year and generate renewable energy from biogas.

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