Judge Stymies Trump Lawsuit Over Nevada Early Vote

Campaign accused Clark County registrar of illegally keeping polling places open after deadline

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Judge Stymies Trump Lawsuit Over Nevada Early Vote
The Trump campaign alleged in a suit that Clark County, Nevada, illegally kept a polling place open on November 4th.

Am incredulous Clark County, Nevada, judge denied an order for a lawsuit filed by the Donald Trump campaign over votes cast at an early voting location in Las Vegas that allowed people to vote after its 8 p.m. closing time, CNBC reports.

The suit was filed after a polling place at a supermarket in the heavily Latino area of East Las Vegas allowed voters to cast their ballots for two hours after its official closing time of 8 p.m. on November 4th, the last day of early voting in the state. 

In its lawsuit, the Trump campaign alleged that Clark County illegally kept the polling place open and that people who weren't in line before 8 p.m. were not allowed to vote. In a portion of the suit tweeted by Bloomberg reporter Sahil Kapur, the Trump campaign seemed to be using the lawsuit as a way to preempt a possible further challenge of the official Nevada results. The suit also claimed, "The Registrar's violations were not random and neutral in their effect, but very much appear to have been intentionally coordinated with Democratic activists in order to skew the vote unlawfully in favor of Democratic candidates."

As Vox notes, it is unclear if there were any voters who got in line after the 8 p.m. cut-off who were allowed to vote. News reports suggested that this did not happen, as there was an estimated two-hour wait at 8 p.m. and the last person voted at approximately 10 p.m. Regardless, while the in-line deadline is strictly enforced on Election Day, Nevada state law is far more flexible during early voting, per the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Furthermore, it is clearly stated in the law that individuals who are in line when a polling place closes must be allowed to vote.

On Saturday, Nevada GOP Chairman Michael McDonald spoke about the late hours at the polling place in very charged and coded language. "Last night, in Clark County, they kept a poll open till 10:00 at night so a certain group could vote," he said while introducing Trump at a rally in Reno. "It wasn't in an area that normally has high transition ... Yeah, you feel free right now? Think this is a free or easy election?"

Clark County spokesman Dan Kulin, however, told CBS Las Vegas that closing times at polling places were not formally extended and that almost all polling places in the area stayed open to accommodate voters. "If there's a line when closing time comes, we just keep processing voters until there's no more line," he said. "We're flexible because we want people to vote."