WASHINGTON, D.C. — Republican lawsuits seeking to drastically expand election observation activities in two Nevada counties have failed, continuing a streak of unsuccessful attempts to implement drastic observation practices. Two lawsuits filed by Republican voters in April, Goldman v. Cegavske and Beadles v. Cegavske, demanded increased opportunities for election observation during future voting and ballot counting processes, arguing that observers — who have no legal role in election administration — were not able to review individual ballots or closely engage with ballot processing in past elections in violation of Nevada law. The plaintiffs demanded that election observers be present at “every step of the election,” including at drop boxes and voting machines, and allow the inspection of ballots to ensure that an election is “handled with transparency, integrity, and is done lawfully.” The Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada intervened in the cases to protect against the disruptive observation tactics requested by Republicans.
After holding hearings last month, the state trial courts handling these cases rejected the plaintiffs’ requests for relief over the past week, finding that the plaintiffs “have failed to establish a likelihood of success on the merits at this juncture.” The parties agreed to dismiss both lawsuits with the agreement that the plaintiffs will be “permitted to observe during the processing and counting ballots in accordance with Nevada law and regulations and [the counties’] existing procedures, to the same extent as other eligible observers.” Essentially, this means that the plaintiffs’ requests for increased observation were unsuccessful and there is no change from the status quo. These outcomes ensure that Nevada voters in these counties will not be subjected to unnecessary observation and interference when they go to vote.