October 23, 2020
Trump Campaign, Nevada GOP File Suit in Nevada, Demand Transparency and Accountability in Nevada Election System
Donald J. Trump for President, Inc., along with the Nevada Republican Party, today filed suit in the First Judicial District Court of the State of Nevada in Carson City against the Nevada Secretary of State and other Nevada election officials over their disregard for the election integrity principles of transparency, accountability, and equal treatment under the law. The Campaign’s lawsuit demands that the state ensure transparency in the ballot counting process, affirm the secrecy of voters’ ballots, and treat all voters equally under voter eligibility and signature authentication laws.
Matthew Morgan, Trump 2020 General Counsel: “President Trump has long fought for a free, fair, transparent election. Today he takes that fight to Nevada’s election officials, who would apparently prefer to avoid accountability and hide ballot processing and counting behind closed doors rather than do so transparently, as the law requires. In a voting system that Democrats rammed into place less than 100 days from Election Day, the highest levels of transparency and accountability are necessary to ensure every valid ballot in Nevada counts—once.”
Nevada Republican Party Chairman Michael J. McDonald: “Transparency is paramount to ensure Nevadans the right to a free and fair election. Clark County’s refusal to allow people to observe the handling of ballots and their low standards for matching signatures should disturb all voters. It is troubling that those trusted to run our elections are going to have to be compelled by the court to follow state law and protect this election. We join President Trump in his fight for transparency and accountability in Nevada’s election system.”
Nevada’s election officials have undermined election integrity by keeping the voting process secret.
- The Trump Campaign’s Petition for Writ of Mandamus, or in the Alternative, Writ of Prohibition is available here.
- Nevada law, NRS 293B.353(1), is clear that local election officials “shall allow members of the general public to observe the counting of the ballots at the central counting place if those members do not interfere with the counting of the ballots.” Clark County is disregarding this clear statutory obligation to accommodate poll observers and ensure transparency. The Trump Campaign and Nevada GOP request the court mandate Clark County allow meaningful observation of the ballot counting process.
- Clark County has failed to protect ballot secrecy as required by AB4, Section 16.(1)(c), leaving opened ballots in envelopes with voter identifying information. We request the court restore the secret ballot under Nevada law by using new unmarked envelopes to move opened ballots.
- Despite limiting the number of observers out of COVID-19 concerns, Clark County has unreasonably rejected the Republican Party’s offer to pay for cameras to observe the ballot counting process in lieu of having individuals present while minimizing public health concerns during observation. We request the court mandate Clark County accommodate camera placement to ensure transparency while mitigating health concerns.
- Nevada has a process to challenge the eligibility of voters who vote in-person under NRS 293.303, but unequally and arbitrarily gives voters who vote by mail an advantage by offering no comparable challenge process for mail-in voters. We request the court ensure Nevada treat all voters equally under the same eligibility process, rather than single out the in-person voters for disparate treatment in violation of the Constitution’s equal protection guarantee.
- Contrary to every other county in Nevada, Clark County alone is misusing a signature authentication machine by setting its sensitivity levels below manufacturer standards, creating a two-tiered voter authentication system that denies voters the equal protection of the law. Clark County must not be allowed to dilute the fundamental right to vote of all Nevadans and should be held to the same authentication process as everyone.
The Trump Campaign and the Nevada GOP’s October 21 letter to the Nevada Secretary of State states: Please understand that the NVGOP and the Trump Campaign take seriously the integrity of the election process and will not stand idly by while certain officials tread on the rights of the people to participate in the election and have their votes counted. As such, unless the your office directs Clark County to: (1) allow observation of the entire ballot counting process; (2) assure all such observation is meaningful observation; and (3) accommodate the request of the NVGOP and the Trump Campaign to place cameras so observation can be done in a safe and secure manner, then the NGVOP and the Trump Campaign will have no alternative other than to seek legal relief.
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