Backers of groups attempting to recall two Democratic state senators are moving to appeal a court decision that found their efforts failed to gain enough signatures to qualify for a special election, likely sending the case to the state Supreme Court. The two political action committees seeking to qualify a recall effort against state Sens. Nicole Cannizzaro and Joyce Woodhouse on Tuesday filed a notice of intent to appeal an April decision by District Court Judge Jerry Wiese that neither recall petition had enough signatures to qualify for a special recall election, after the removal of several blocks of invalid signatures. The appeal is a last-chance effort for backers of the recall efforts, which were launched 10 months ago and need a favorable ruling from the state’s highest court to continue moving forward.
Although the two recall efforts initially submitted enough signatures to qualify for a special election, Democratic groups opposing the efforts were able to turn in thousands of signature withdrawal requests that drove the number down below the qualifying threshold.
The appeal will likely focus on whether the court should accept a group of signature withdrawal forms turned in after the recall petition was submitted to county election officials. In March, Wiese upheld the constitutionality of those signature withdrawals.
Nevada law requires recalls to obtain the signatures of 25 percent of the voters who cast a ballot in the last election of the targeted office-holder within a 90-day period. Signatures are then reviewed by state and local election officials, who remove invalid signatures to determine whether the gathered signatures meet the minimum legal threshold.