LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — More Nevada voters chose “none of these candidates” than the margin that separated Democratic Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto and Republican Adam Laxalt as of Sunday.
Cortez Masto declared victory Saturday as updated vote totals had her leading her opponent by about 7,000 votes — or about 0.7%.
In Nevada, voters in statewide races can choose the candidates or none of them. The option became law in 1975. If “none of these candidates” wins the election, the candidate with the most votes still wins, state law says.
In 2012, the Republican Nation Committee sued to remove the option from the ballot. The U.S. Court of Appeals later sided with the state, keeping the option available.
In the 2012 election for U.S. Senate, “none of these candidates” received 45,277 votes, almost four times the 11,576-vote margin between Republican Sen. Dean Heller and Rep. Shelley Berkley. Heller would win the election.
In 2016, the margin between presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump was also smaller than the number of people who voted for no one. Clinton won Nevada by 27,202 votes. “None of these candidates” received 28,863 votes.
The margin between Cortez Masto and Laxalt will fluctuate as a small number of provisional ballots are added to the count.
Monday will be the last day to cure ballots, those are ones with signature discrepancies. Wednesday will be a provisional day when the office receives a report from the Secretary of State to load into their system. Gloria will report the official election results to the Clark County Commission on Thursday.
A candidate can request a recount within three days of that certification. Nevada has no automatic trigger for a recount, and a candidate must request one — and pay for it, according to state law.
No campaign had contacted the Clark County Registrar of Voters about any alleged inaccuracies as of Saturday, Registrar of Voters Joe Gloria said.