Citing bias, Rodimer has judge removed from case calling for new election

Local News

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Republican congressional candidate Dan Rodimer successfully had a Clark County judge dismissed from his lawsuit, citing bias due to her work with an organization that recruits and trains women to run for Congress and other political seats as Democrats.

Rodimer was in court Monday for his lawsuit, which asks for a new election in the state’s Third Congressional District. Judge Gloria Sturman was hearing the lawsuit.

Rodimer lost by almost 3 percent to incumbent Democrat Rep. Susie Lee after more than 417,000 votes were tallied in their race, according to results certified by the Clark County Commission.

The lawsuit claims voter and ballot counting irregularities ,and also points to the Clark County Commission race which was decided by 10 votes. That county commission district is represented by the district, which Rodimer was seeking to win.

Democratic Rep. Susie Lee won her race against Republican Dan Rodimer by more than 12,000 votes. (KLAS)

Rodimer is represented by Craig Mueller, the same attorney who filed similar lawsuits on behalf of state Senate candidate April Becker and Fourth Congressional District candidate Jim Marchant, both Republicans.

In court Monday, Mueller claimed Sturman could not be without bias because of her work with the group Emerge Nevada. According to a mission statement on the group’s website, Emerge Nevada works “to increase the number of Democratic women from diverse backgrounds in public office through recruitment, training, and providing a powerful network.”

Sturman said Nevada ethics law allows judges to side with political parties, but not align with a party during an election. Nevada judicial candidates run as non-partisan. Sturman ran as non-partisan in the November election and won her uncontested race.

“Although I live in this particular congressional district, I think I may have met Ms. Lee, but I don’t know her. I live on the same street as Mr. Rodimer,” Sturman said in a back-and-forth moment with Mueller in court.

“I understand that, but the reality is, the question is, is the appearance of bias there?” Mueller responded.

“Well I’m Mr. Rodimer’s neighbor. Wouldn’t that be an appearance of bias?” Sturman asked.

Mueller, who presented a nearly identical case involving Marchant on Friday in Sturman’s court did not bring up any issues of potential bias or Emerge Nevada. However, Marchant lost to Rep. Steven Horsford, a man, while Rodimer lost to Lee, a woman.

A new judge will hear Rodimer’s case Tuesday, the same day the Nevada Supreme Court will certify the state’s election results.

Emerge Nevada released a statement following Rodimer’s request: 

Emerge Nevada is proud to have trained hundreds of women across Nevada to run for elected office. The mission of Emerge Nevada is to recruit, train and mentor Democratic women who aspire to elected office. Judge Gloria Sturman is an Emerge Nevada alumna, but she is not a member as there is no membership in Emerge. There is no conflict between Judge Sturman’s participation in our training program in 2009, with her as a candidate in 2010, 2014 and 2020, and her actions as a sitting judge. Congresswoman Susie Lee has supported our candidate training program, but is not an alumna of our training program. 

Failed Congressional Candidate Dan Rodimer and his attempt to discredit a sitting Nevada judge is despicable. Judge Gloria Sturman was rightfully elected, and re-elected by Nevadans, because of her fair and consistent application of the law. As an alumna of Emerge Nevada, we are proud of her accomplishments on the bench and her desire to serve our community.

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