LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A razor-thin Clark County Commission election that was challenged all the way to the Nevada Supreme Court was upheld in a ruling issued today.
A lawsuit by Republican Stavros Anthony pointed to 139 “unexplained discrepancies” in balloting in his election bid against Democrat Ross Miller, who won last year’s election by 15 votes.
But justices on Thursday ruled that lower court decisions correctly ruled that a new election was not needed.
Anthony’s lawsuit cited NRS 293.465, arguing that a new election was needed because the discrepancies “prevented” him from winning.
But Judge Elizabeth Gonzales said on Nov. 30 that the margin of victory was not a sufficient cause to require a new election. “There is a discrepancy of 139 (votes) — that does not mean that there was any election that was prevented,” Gonzalez said.
Anthony argued that was an interpretation of the statute that was “too narrow.” The Supreme Court said Thursday that Anthony was reading other statutes “too broadly” in his appeal.
The County Commission, after initially ordering a new election on the advice of Registrar of Voters Joe Gloria, voted 7-0 to certify the District C results.
In Thursday’s ruling upholding the results, the Nevada Supreme Court said:
This statute, by its plain terms, applies only when an election is ‘prevented’ due to ‘the loss or destruction of ballots … or any other cause.’ No ballots
were lost or destroyed here; instead, this appeal turns on whether the election was ‘prevented’ by ‘any other cause.’
Chief Justice James W. Hardesty wrote in the court opinion, “Because voters had the opportunity to vote in the November 3, 2020, general election and were not prevented from casting their votes for District C, we conclude that the district court properly found that the election was not “prevented” under NRS 293.465. Accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the district court.”