Nevada Judge Agrees to Expedite GOP Suit Over 3,000 Ballots

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A federal judge in Nevada agreed to expedite a Republican request for a temporary restraining against the state’s process for counting mail-in ballots, as the Democratic National Committee moved to intervene in the case.

U.S. District Judge Andrew Gordon in Las Vegas set a hearing for 2 p.m. local time on Friday to hear arguments in the case, which echoes unfounded claims made a day earlier by officials with President Donald Trump’s campaign.

Two Republican congressional candidates filed the suit Thursday, claiming observers don’t have proper access to the ballot-counting process and that Nevada’s advanced software system for scanning signatures on envelopes isn’t catching mismatches. The suit also claims about 3,000 mail-in ballots were cast illegally by out-of-state voters.

The plaintiffs made an emergency request for a hearing to argue for a temporary restraining order against the state’s ballot-counting procedure.

The suit names a Clark County official and Nevada Secretary of State Barbara Cegavske, who said in a Friday court filing that the suit “is absurd and must be rejected by this court.” Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford, a Democrat, told CBS News the suit is “in a word, garbage.”

The DNC’s top election lawyer, Marc Elias, on Friday filed a motion to intervene in the suit, saying Republicans were making “entirely fabricated claims of voter fraud” and “requesting a remedy that would meaningfully slow Clark County’s ballot processing just as its votes could swing the presidential election.”

The two Republican congressional candidates behind the suit are former Nevada state legislator James Marchant and a lawyer, Daniel Rodimer. They were joined as plaintiffs by a voter, Jill Stokke, a 79-year-old blind woman who claims someone illegally voted in her name.

A lawyer for the Trump campaign made similar allegations in a letter to U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr on Thursday, urging a federal investigation into the Nevada election.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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