The latest twist in a tangled North Las Vegas election tale involves both a union stagehand who voted in the city but doesn’t live there and the mayor’s son. Voter Greg Mich’l, who lives in Las Vegas, admitted Thursday he voted in the North Las Vegas contest between incumbent Councilman Richard Cherchio and Wade Wagner, which was decided by a single vote.
Mich’l, 26, said he didn’t know he couldn’t vote in North Las Vegas. “I’m really embarrassed,” he said. “I never vote, and then this happens.”
Meanwhile, Cherchio’s attorney on Thursday said Jordan Buck, Mayor Shari Buck’s 23-year-old-son, might have cast an invalid ballot. “There’s substantial question about whether he has the right to vote here,” Bradley Schrager said. “We are investigating every potential discrepancy.” Wagner, a 48-year-old dentist, won the June 7 election with 1,831 votes. Cherchio got 1,830.
The mayor, who endorsed Wagner and whose husband was his campaign manager, called the allegation about her son “disgusting and despicable.”
“This is a witch hunt,” she said. “I’ve never seen this type of harassment in a voting situation. It’s disturbing.”
Cherchio, 64, filed a lawsuit Wednesday challenging the election, calling the results “legally uncertain” because an official allowed a voter to cast a ballot in the wrong ward on election night. That voter was registered to vote in North Las Vegas, but not in Ward 4.
In addition to the ineligible election-night voter, the lawsuit refers to “at least two other voters” who “upon information and belief … were permitted to cast invalid ballots” in the race. The lawsuit asks the court to set aside the election results and declare the Ward 4 seat vacant.
The lawsuit doesn’t name the two other voters. One is Mich’l. The other is Jordan Buck, who is registered to vote in two states and who Cherchio’s camp says might have been ineligible to cast a vote in the city.
Mich’l, who lives on Villa Pintura Avenue in Las Vegas, spends a lot of time at his brother’s North Las Vegas home, near Wagner’s. Mich’l was working in his brother’s garage one day when someone from Wagner’s campaign — it might have been Wagner himself, he wasn’t sure — approached and asked whether Mich’l was registered to vote.
“I said, ‘No,’ and he had the forms there,” Mich’l said. “I didn’t give it much thought. Then the ballot came in the mail, and I didn’t give it much thought.”
Mich’l marked his vote for Wagner and sent the ballot off. He supported Wagner because “he lives in the same neighborhood as my brother, and I know a lot of people who are friends” with Wagner.
Mich’l later saw news reports saying that Wagner had won by a single vote and that an ineligible voter had mistakenly cast a ballot in the wrong ward.
Mich’l assumed that voter was him.