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Despite Calls To Concede, Fletcher Plans To Fight On

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Despite growing pressue to give up his bid to become state superintendent, Bill Fletcher is not backing down.

After endorsing Fletcher for the job, the

News and Observer

editorial staff is calling on the Republican to concede. He trails Democrat June Atkinson by more than 8,500 votes.

Armed with a state Supreme Court ruling that more than 11,000 provisional ballots were illegal, Fletcher now heads back to Superior Court. He said another statewide election must be considered.

State Board of Education Chair Howard Lee said the Department of Public Instruction continues to run smoothly despite the absence of a permanent leader. He credits interim superintendent Tricia Willoughby with doing a good job keeping the department on task even though she is splitting her time and responsibilities with Meredith College.

Fletcher agrees, but contends he would shake the system saying, "I'd be different. I'd be a thorn in the side of the governor."

Atkinson has consistently called on Fletcher to give up the fight.

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