Nevada Supreme Court denies appeal of conservative activist seeking to oust county election official | Associated Press

A conservative activist who embraced unproven election fraud claims has lost an appeal to the Nevada Supreme Court in his bid to oust a top county election official and others. The high court on Wednesday upheld a lower-court judge’s earlier dismissal of Robert Beadles’ lawsuit, which claimed that Washoe County’s registrar of voters, the county manager and a county commissioner violated the state constitution by failing to respond to his complaints of fraud. “Taking all the factual allegations in the complaint as true and drawing every inference in favor of Beadles, he can prove no set facts that would entitle him to relief as pleaded,” the Supreme Court ruled. Read Article

Nevada: GOP sues state over late mail-in ballots | Hillel Aron/Courthouse News Service

The Republican Party, along with Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, filed a lawsuit against Nevada and its two largest counties over their policy of accepting mail-in ballots arriving up to four days after Election Day.  Nevada’s Secretary of State defended the state’s election practices, emphasizing their transparency and accessibility, while the Republicans expressed concerns about the disproportionate impact on Republican candidates and voters. Read Article

Nevada Secretary of State Wants More Election Funding After Presidential Primary “Glitch” | Matt Cohen/Democracy Docket

Nevada Secretary of State Francisco Aguilar is calling for more federal funding for elections after a coding “glitch” in the vote tally in the state’s Presidential Preference Primary in February. An unknown number of voters were erroneously marked down as having voted when they didn’t in fact vote. The glitch was fixed and no extra votes were counted, but the incident prompted a letter from U.S. Rep. Bryan Steil (R-Wis.), chairman of the Committee on House Administration, to Aguilar expressing concern over what led to the glitch. In response to Steil’s letter, Aguilar sent a letter on March 22 asking for Congress to provide more federal funding for elections to ensure similar glitches don’t happen again. Read Article

Nevada: Republican National Committee sues Secretary of State over voter registration records | Mark Hebert/Courthouse News Service

The Republican National Committee, Nevada Republican Party, and a registered voter have jointly filed a lawsuit against Nevada Secretary of State Cisco Aguilar and other election authorities, alleging that several counties in the state maintain outdated or inaccurate voter rolls, thus violating the National Voter Registration Act of 1993. Nevada’s attorney general countered the GOP’s claims, arguing that the data used for assessment was flawed and offering alternative datasets for comparison. Read Article

Nevada county election official in charge of controversial 2022 hand-count plan resigns | Gabe Stern/Associated Press

Mark Kampf, the Nye County Clerk in Nevada, known for presiding over a hand-count in the 2022 midterms amid false claims of election fraud, is resigning effective March 31, according to a letter received by the county. The reasons for his resignation remain unclear, with Kampf declining to comment. He assumed the position after the county commission unanimously voted to switch to hand-counting amidst conspiracy theories about the 2020 election, leading to the resignation of the previous clerk. However, Kampf’s approach to hand-counting differed from the original plan, with machines remaining the primary counting method. Read Article

Nevada Secretary of State says coding issues to blame for errors in online voter history records | Tabitha Mueller/The Nevada Independent

The Nevada Secretary of State’s office addressed coding errors in files used for nightly updates on voter registration history, clarifying that the mistakes did not affect the presidential primary election results. The errors stemmed from missed steps in uploading voter registration data, particularly related to voters who did not return mail ballots, but did not impact vote tabulation. Read Article

Nevada Secretary of State defends Dominion voting machines | Mark Robison/Reno Gazette Journal

The Nevada Secretary of State has sent an email to county clerks and registrars in the state defending the state’s Dominion ImageCast X (ICX) voting machines after University of Michigan computer science professor Alex Halderman testified in a federal trial recently in Georgia about the vulnerability of those machines. Nevada uses the ICX as a direct recording electronic DRE system while Georgia uses them as ballot marking devices (BMDs). Nevada also uses a different voting system version. Previously they had been using a Nevada-specific version (DVS 5.12) and last year they upgraded to DVS 5.17, the EAC certified version Dominion developed after a 2021 security analysis co-authored by Halderman. The concern about the encoding of voter selections into QR code that has been an important issue in the Georgia tria is moot in Nevada since no Printed Vote Records are produced by the ICX when used as a DRE. Further arguments about physical and cyber security measures that would require “unlimited access to the voting machines” for the attacks assumes no insider threat. Read Article

Nevada Republicans can’t decide between a primary or a caucus – so they’re doing both | Joe Sommerlad/The Independent

Nevada Republicans are set to host both a caucus and a primary as part of their unique electoral system, driven by a 2021 bipartisan bill requiring political primaries if multiple candidates vie for a race. While Nevada Democrats have embraced this change, Nevada Republicans insist on maintaining their traditional caucus alongside the state-run primary. Despite attempts to challenge the primary requirement in court, the party succeeded in ensuring that delegates would only be awarded through the caucus, making the primary more of a symbolic exercise. Read Article

Nevada Secretary of State tries to get ahead of caucus-caused confusion – without criticizing caucus | April Corbin Girnis/Nevada Current

Nevada Secretary of State Francisco Aguilar on Wednesday offered little direct criticism of the Nevada Republican Party for rejecting the state-run presidential preference primary in favor of hosting their own party-run caucus. But he defended the state’s primary election system, calling it more accessible to voters than a caucus held over less than three hours on just one specific day. Read Article

Nevada: Elections head in Washoe County resigns, underscoring election turnover in key state | Gabe Stern/Associated Press

The turnover among election officials in Nevada continues as Washoe County Registrar of Voters, Jamie Rodriguez, abruptly resigns less than a month before the Feb. 6 presidential preference primary. In her resignation letter, Rodriguez expressed a desire to pursue opportunities outside of elections and spend more time with family in preparation for the crucial 2024 election cycle. This adds to the eleven of Nevada’s 17 counties that have seen turnover in top county election positions since the 2020 election. Rodriguez’s departure comes after an extensive audit in Washoe County revealed issues of rapid turnover and understaffing that hindered election processes. The state has faced resignations due to threats, lack of support, and challenges in implementing changes like the universal mail ballot system. Read Article

Nevada GOP ‘fake electors’ plead not guilty to felony charges in Las Vegas | Gabby Birenbaum/The Nevada Independent

Six Nevada Republicans, including state party Chair Michael McDonald, have pleaded not guilty to felony charges related to their attempt to pledge the state’s electoral votes to Donald Trump after the 2020 election. The charges, brought almost three years after the defendants participated in a fake signing ceremony, include offering a false instrument for filing and uttering a forged instrument. The charges carry a minimum sentence of one year and a maximum of four to five years. Read Article

Six Nevada Republicans charged with casting fake electoral votes in 2020 | Rachel Leingang/The Guardian

Six Republicans in Nevada, who falsely claimed to be presidential electors in 2020, were charged with two felonies each by the state’s attorney general. The charges include “offering a false instrument for filing” and “uttering a forged instrument” for sending documents claiming to be the state’s electors. This follows similar cases in Georgia and Michigan, with other states still investigating. Read Article

Nevada: Former Trump attorney to cooperate with investigators in fake elector probe | Tabitha Mueller and Eric Neugeboren/The Nevada Independent

A former attorney for President Donald Trump, Kenneth Chesebro, who played a role in the submission of fraudulent slates of electors in Nevada and other swing states after the 2020 presidential election, has agreed to meet with Nevada officials investigating the false electors. Chesebro is cooperating with investigators as part of the state’s probe into the fake elector scheme, which involved falsely pledging Nevada’s electoral votes to Trump. The investigation focuses on potential charges related to filing false documents, with a deadline for charges under Nevada law approaching on December 14, the three-year anniversary of the fake electors’ meeting in Carson City. Read Article

Nevada GOP fake electors under state investigation | Tabitha Mueller and Gabby Birenbaum/The Nevada Independent

Nevada’s Attorney General, Aaron Ford, a Democrat, is now investigating six Republicans who falsely pledged Nevada’s electoral votes to Donald Trump in 2020, despite Joe Biden winning the state by 2.4 percentage points. The Republicans, including state party chair Michael McDonald and national committeeman Jim DeGraffenreid, submitted an uncertified slate of electors for Trump in December 2020, following the Trump campaign’s instructions. The investigation marks a shift for Ford, who had previously been silent on the matter, citing that state law might not allow for charges. Other states, like Michigan and Georgia, have brought charges against individuals involved in similar fake elector schemes. The investigation raises questions about the violation of Nevada law, which mandates electors to cast their votes for the popular vote winner and prohibits unauthorized public duties or falsifying records. Read Article

Opinion: Nevada normalizes its fake electors | Hugh Jackson/Nevada Current

The Nevada Secretary of State’s office invited a fake elector, Jim DeGraffenried, to make a presentation to its Advisory Committee on Participatory Democracy, raising concerns about normalizing election denialism. DeGraffenried and other fake electors played a crucial role in Donald Trump’s attempt to steal the 2020 presidential election. Despite their efforts to undermine democracy, the Nevada Republican Party sought to legitimize DeGraffenried by naming him Nevada’s National Republican Committeeman. The decision to invite him to speak on participatory democracy has been criticized for giving a platform to those who spread misinformation about elections. Read Article

Nevada’s exodus of election officials took with them 104 years of experience, says report | April Corbin Girnus/Nevada Current

Since the last presidential election, ten out of seventeen Nevada counties have seen a turnover in their top election officials, marking a higher rate of change than most other western states, according to a report by the political reform group Issue One. The turnover is attributed to a range of factors, including political pressure, threats, and burnout. Issue One is advocating for increased federal funding and protections to address the issue and strengthen the democratic process. Read Article

Nevada: Election regulations again draw GOP pushback; allow hand counting, with limits | Sean Golonka/The Nevada Independent

The Nevada Secretary of State’s office is in the process of updating and adopting regulations for the upcoming presidential primary elections. These regulations cover various technical aspects of election administration and are aligned with state election laws passed in the last legislative session. They establish timelines for pre- and post-election procedures and provide clarity for election officials and the public on how elections are conducted. While the process is routine, it has become a platform for Nevada Republicans to express concerns about the state’s election laws. Some argue that these regulations represent an “election law power grab,” while others criticize the state’s mail ballot laws and the requirement for a presidential preference primary for each major party. The regulations will need approval from the Legislative Commission before taking effect. Read Article

Nevada: Audit confirms legitimacy of Clark County’s mail ballot processes | Casey Harrison/Las Vegas Sun

An audit of the Clark County Election Department’s handling of mail ballots during the 2022 general election concluded that election officials followed state law when processing ballots. The report made suggestions to enhance the process in future elections, including better verbalizing the process in which mail ballots are counted and additional voter education initiatives about when to send a ballot and how to properly mark it. The audit showed that 4,903 mail ballots were rejected for not meeting legal requirements, highlighting the need for continued educational and outreach efforts to increase voter awareness around submission deadlines. The audit found that overall, the Election Department processes mail ballots accurately and in accordance with Nevada law. Read Article

Nevada’s 2020 fake electors may not yet be in the clear, former US attorney says | Casey Harrison/Las Vegas Sun

Nevada Republicans who participated in a scheme to overturn the 2020 presidential election could still face federal charges, despite a state attorney general’s determination that they broke no state laws. The Republicans were part of a group in several states that hosted fake ceremonies to certify electoral votes in favor of Donald Trump, sending phony certificates to the National Archives. Michigan has already charged its fake electors, and federal prosecutors may pursue charges against the Nevada group, who had no legal standing to meet. Experts suggest that the key to potential federal charges would be proving that the participants knowingly broke the law. Read Article

Nevada judge denies GOP request to block presidential primary election | Riley Snyder/The Nevada Independent

A judge in Carson City has rejected the Nevada Republican Party’s motion to replace the state’s presidential primary election with a caucus. The lawsuit challenged a 2021 law that shifted Nevada from a caucus to a primary. The judge ruled that the Republican Party could still hold a caucus if it chose to do so. The party intends to proceed with a caucus in February to allocate presidential delegates and is seeking to avoid a state-run primary election. The 2021 law was signed by Democratic Governor Steve Sisolak and advanced Nevada’s position in the presidential nominating calendar. The Republican Party wants to maintain the traditional Iowa-New Hampshire-South Carolina-Nevada schedule. Read Article

Nevada officials call for dismissal of GOP lawsuit to stop presidential primary election | Eric Neugeboren/The Nevada Independent

State officials in Nevada are pushing back against a lawsuit filed by the Nevada Republican Party to halt the state’s scheduled presidential primary election in February. The lawsuit challenges the constitutionality of a new law requiring a presidential preference primary and argues that it violates the party’s freedom of association. The state’s attorney general’s office responded, stating that the lawsuit lacks legal merit and that the party is not obligated to accept the results of the primary in delegate allocation. Under the new law, Nevada will transition from caucuses to primary elections for both major political parties. The primary election results will be non-binding, allowing the party to decide how to allocate delegates. State officials argue that the primary election will enhance security and accessibility compared to caucuses. Read Article

Nevada ‘fake electors’ appear before D.C. Jan. 6 grand jury | Natasha Korecki, Ryan J. Reilly, Victoria Ebner and Katherine Doyle/NBC

The grand jury investigation into the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol and Donald Trump’s attempts to remain in office is progressing, with Nevada GOP Chair Michael McDonald and Vice Chair Jim DeGraffenreid spotted entering the area where the jury is meeting. McDonald, a close ally of Trump, previously confirmed that federal authorities seized his cellphone as part of the investigation. This comes after former Trump official Steve Bannon was subpoenaed by a federal grand jury in connection with the investigation. Another former White House aide testified before the grand jury regarding Trump’s firing of Christopher Krebs, who led election cybersecurity efforts. The investigation is separate from the one in Miami concerning Trump’s handling of classified documents. Read Article

Nevada: Outside audit finds ‘error-prone’ processes and ‘confusion’ in Washoe County elections | Mark Robison/Reno Gazette Journal

A new outside audit of Washoe County’s election process highlights concerns and offers recommendations for improvement. The audit, conducted as part of a $100,000 contract, reveals several issues with the 2022 election, including errors, confusion, and delayed mail ballots. The report suggests that Washoe County needs to address challenges such as staff turnover, lack of institutional knowledge, outdated technical systems, inefficient processes, and poor communication with the public. The audit recommends hiring more staff, providing comprehensive training, and allocating adequate resources to improve the election system. Additionally, it advises implementing standardized procedures for ballot development, better handling of mail ballots, and improved voter registration processes. The audit emphasizes the need for transparency, effective communication, and building trust with observers and the public to ensure a fair and legitimate election process. Read Article

Nevada becomes latest to enhance penalties for election worker intimidation after statewide exodus | Gabe Stern/Associated Press

Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak signed a bill into law on Tuesday that makes it a felony to harass, intimidate or use force on election workers performing their duties. The law was passed unanimously by the state legislature and was a core campaign promise from Secretary of State Cisco Aguilar. The law is meant to deter attacks against election workers who have faced increased scrutiny and threats in recent years. The law also makes it a felony to disseminate personal information about an election worker without their consent. The law is the latest in a series of measures taken by states to protect election workers. Other states that have taken similar steps include Maine, Vermont, Washington, New Mexico and Oklahoma. The law is a significant step in protecting election workers and ensuring that they can do their jobs without fear of harassment or intimidation. Read Article

Nevada: In response to Trump fake electors in 2020, bill passes legislature | April Corbin Girnus/Nevada Current

The Nevada Republicans who submitted fraudulent election certification documents after the 2020 presidential election will not face criminal charges for their actions, but a new bill, Senate Bill 133, has been passed that would make creating or serving on a false slate of electors a category B felony. If the bill becomes law, future fake electors could face a minimum sentence of four years in prison, a maximum of 10 years, and a fine of up to $5,000. They would also be prohibited from holding public office or jobs in state or local government. The bill is a response to the coordinated attempt made by the 2020 Trump campaign and allies to overturn the election results and the actions of fake electors, which were central to Trump’s failed plan for Congress to reject Joe Biden’s victory. The bill now awaits the decision of Governor Joe Lombardo, who previously expressed support for one of the fake electors. Read Article

Nevada Attorney General backs making fake elector schemes a felony in light of 2020 | Casey Harrison/Las Vegas Sun

Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford has revealed that his office is unable to prosecute individuals who signed fake electoral certificates declaring Donald Trump the winner in Nevada after the 2020 election because there is no state law explicitly making such actions illegal. Ford testified in support of Senate Bill 133, which seeks to prohibit the creation and submission of false slates of presidential electors, making it a category B felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison and fines up to $5,000. The bill aims to hold accountable those attempting to subvert democratic processes based on false claims. Ford’s office is also assisting the U.S. Department of Justice in its investigation into fake electors. Read Article

Nevada lawmakers consider requiring voting machines for all in-person voting | Sean Golonka/The Nevada Independent

After multiple rural counties attempted to eliminate or consider eliminating the use of mechanical voting machines last year, Nevada lawmakers are considering a bill that would require such machines to be used for in-person voting. The change would primarily affect Nye County, where county officials last year transitioned away from the use of electronic voting machines amid the spread of election fraud conspiracy theories that targeted Dominion Voting Systems, a major manufacturer and provider of voting equipment nationally and in Nevada. AB242, which comes from the Joint Interim Standing Committee on Legislative Operations and Elections, would prohibit the use of paper ballots for in-person voting, instead requiring the use of voting machines for in-person voting. Voting machines used in Nevada include the Dominion electronic voting machines used in 15 counties, including Clark and Washoe counties, and mechanical ballot marking devices used in Carson City and Lander County. Assemblywoman Tracy Brown-May (D-Las Vegas) presented the bill and said the measure was intended to “address the inadequacies in accessibility for people with disabilities to be able to cast their votes.”

Full Article: Lawmakers consider requiring voting machines for all in-person voting – The Nevada Independent

Nevada Secretary of State slams Governor’s election reform bill | Mark Credico/Las Vegas Review-Journal

Nevada Secretary of State Francisco Aguilar criticized an elections bill introduced by Gov. Joe Lombardo that would institute voter ID and end the practice of sending a mail ballot to every active registered voter. Speaking during a tour of Henderson’s voting facilities Monday as residents cast ballots in a special election to fill the vacant Ward 1 seat, Aguilar dismissed Senate Bill 405 as unnecessary. “I think it’s the solution to a problem that doesn’t exist,” Aguilar told reporters Monday morning. The measure, introduced last week, would require voters to show ID to vote, either in person or by mail, end universal mail balloting, require all mail ballots to be received by the county before polls close on Election Day and place limitations on so-called ballot harvesters who turn in ballots on behalf of others. Other Nevada Democrats have also criticized the governor’s proposed bill. Aguilar called the bill “a response to anecdotal information rather than facts.” He praised the current state of Nevada’s elections, saying they are “some of the most secure elections in the country” and are highly rated by third-party audits.

Full Article: Aguilar slams Lombardo’s Nevada election reform bill | Las Vegas Review-Journal

Nevada Governor targets mail ballots, wants voter ID | Jessica Hill/Las Vegas Review-Journal

Republican Gov. Joe Lombardo introduced legislation Monday that would make sweeping changes to Nevada’s election process, including repealing universal mail-in voting, requiring an ID to vote and moving up the deadline for completed mail ballots to be received. If passed, Senate Bill 405 would undo election-related legislation passed by the 2021 Legislature and signed by Lombardo’s Democratic predecessor, Steve Sisolak, that expanded voting access and led to the state receiving an “A” grade on its election report card from the Institute for Responsive Government. “Governor Lombardo submitted SB 405 as part of his ongoing promise to fight for common sense election reforms in Nevada,” said Elizabeth Ray, Lombardo’s spokeswoman. “SB 405 will help restore faith and timeliness in our election system, so that every Nevadan has confidence that our voting process is free and fair.”

Full Article: Lombardo bill would make sweeping changes to Nevada elections | Las Vegas Review-Journal

Nevada Senate bill: Repay state for unused voting machines | Taylor R. Avery/Las Vegas Review-Journal

Counties and cities could be on the hook for repaying the state for unused voting machines under a bill considered by lawmakers Thursday. Senate Bill 215, presented by state Sen. James Ohrenschall, D-Las Vegas, would require counties and cities that choose to stop using voting machines purchased with state funds to return the money to the state. The bill comes in response to some counties that considered using paper ballots and hand counting, ostensibly to ensure election integrity. The bill would not be retroactive, meaning counties that have already opted to stop using voting machines wouldn’t be required to pay the money back. If passed, the bill would become effective on July 1. The proposed legislation was suggested by an interim legislative committee, which voted in August to request a version of the bill be introduced during the 2023 legislative session.

Full Article: Nevada Senate bill: Repay state for unused voting machines | Las Vegas Review-Journal