One day after the swearing-in, the new NC judge changes registration


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ELIZABETH CITY, NC (AP) – A North Carolina judge changed her voter registration from Democrat to Republican the day after she was sworn in to the office for which Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper appointed her.

District court judge Jennifer Karpowicz Bland changed her registration on September 3, according to Dare County election records. The former Deputy District Attorney was sworn in on September 2, the week after Cooper announced that Bland would now succeed Superior Court Judge Eula Reid, The Daily Advance of Elizabeth City reported.

It is not mandatory that a member of the political party of the governor or the outgoing judge be chosen by the governor. Historically, however, governors have often favored someone from their own party to fill vacancies.

Bland said his political views were never raised in two pre-appointment talks with Cooper. Bland said she did not contact Cooper’s office about her change of parties until she had completed it.

“I’ve always been a conservative,” Bland said recently. “This is the party that best represents my values.

In response to the change, Cooper’s office focused on criticizing the GOP-controlled legislature for passing laws in the 2010s to make judicial elections officially partisan again.

“It’s still wrong now,” spokesman Jordan Monaghan said. “The governor expects appointed magistrates to present themselves and serve with integrity and to obey the law. “

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