Since the November election, Democrats and the media have kept up a constant, mantra-like refrain that there is “no evidence of widespread election fraud.” Even specific allegations of fraud, irregularities, and the flouting of state election laws in key battleground states have been waved away by reporters and pundits as “baseless” and “without evidence”—even in cases where witnesses to alleged crimes have signed sworn affidavits.
But it might not be so easy to dismiss the allegations and evidence Trump campaign lawyers will present to a district court judge in Nevada on Thursday afternoon.
Campaign lawyers have been working overtime in Nevada in recent weeks, scrambling to subpoena witnesses, collect evidence, and catalog their findings, which they say proves widespread election fraud—not hundreds of illegal votes but more than a hundred thousand, enough to overturn Joe Biden’s 33,000-vote margin of victory in the state.
“The evidence we are about to submit to the court proves that massive voter fraud permeated the Nevada presidential election and shows that the certification of Joe Biden as the winner of the presidential election should be immediately reversed and for President Trump to be awarded his electors,” said Jesse Binnall, a lawyer heading the campaign effort in Nevada.
The state lawsuit Binnall and his team have filed is separate from a suit dropped last week by Nevada Republicans, who earlier this month alleged that thousands of people who no longer live in Nevada cast ballots in the November election.
The case Binnall will bring Thursday before a judge in Carson City, Nevada, makes more sweeping allegations, including claims that 42,000 voters voted twice, that about 1,500 dead people voted, and that nearly 30,000 voters were registered at non-residential addresses, vacant addresses, or non-existent addresses. Many thousands more Nevada voters, the campaign alleges, are registered with out-of-state addresses.
This is the kind of case, with actual evidence, that deserves to be heard and evaluated in an actual court of law, not on Twitter or CNN. The charges here are serious, involving more than just claims of voter fraud but also allegations that the U.S. Postal Service has been preventing whistleblowers and witnesses from testifying about instructions they received to deliver absentee ballots to addresses where they knew no one lived, especially in Clark County, where about 8,000 voters were determined to have undeliverable addresses.
Testimony under oath would shed some light on this, as would testimony from Clark County Registrar Joe Gloria, whose employees reportedly locked their office doors to prevent Gloria from being served a subpoena last week. Over the weekend, Gloria refused to leave his house, and it’s still unclear if he will be deposed or compelled to testify in court.
He should be, if only to offer his version of events about why court-ordered inspectors weren’t allowed sufficient access to voting machines or the contents of USB drives for those machines. According to Trump campaign lawyers, Clark County election officials maintained that the inspectors only needed to observe that the USB drives existed, not examine what was on them, which makes no sense.
Gloria might also be able to shed some light on why Clark County Commissioners voted to certify the results of a district election on Tuesday after previously concluding the election was too close to call and so riddled with irregularities and inconsistencies that there would have to be a new vote. In other words, how did the county commissioners suddenly gain confidence in the election outcome, reversing their previous decision, without resolving the overwhelming inconsistencies?
Gloria should also be able to answer questions about an inspection of the voting machines and signature verification systems ordered by the judge in this case. Instead of an inspection, campaign lawyers say what they got instead was “a guided tour,” and were prevented from doing “a computer forensic inspection in accordance with the judge’s order.” In a statement, they said the so-called inspection “was like trying to determine if a car had failed brakes without getting underneath the car.”
In addition, the Trump campaign’s legal team plans to present a recent poll of mail-in only voters in Nevada. One percent of those polled, between three and seven thousand votes, don’t believe they voted in the election, and 2 percent say they never received a ballot in the mail.
All of this is playing out in a state that radically changed its voting system less than 90 days before the November election, loosening requirements on signature verification of absentee ballots, lifting restrictions on ballot harvesting, and massively expanding vote-by-mail—all in the name of highly questionable COVID-19 precautions.
Indeed, Nevada was among a handful of states that radically changed its rules for absentee voting in the run-up to the presidential vote, authorizing absentee ballots to be sent to every registered voter in the state. The result was that Nevada received more than eight times the number of mail-in ballots in 2020 compared to 2016, with Cark County receiving more than ten times the total it got four years ago.
As I reported last week, tribal communities in Nevada were the target of a highly coordinated and totally illegal get-out-the-vote scheme that offered raffles of cash cards, gas cards, electronics, and other “prizes” to tribal members in exchange for proof they voted. These illegal GOTV campaigns also included efforts to harvest absentee ballots and appeared to show ballot harvesters exchanging gift cards for ballots in some tribal areas.
All of this should come as no surprise, if for no other reason than a massive expansion of mail-in voting invites massive amounts of voter fraud. But the place to evaluate evidence of such fraud is in court—not online or during press conferences or in the pages of The New York Times.
It might turn out that not all these claims of fraud and illegal activity can be substantiated by the evidence. It might turn out that some can and some can’t. Even if they can, overturning the results in Nevada wouldn’t be enough to change the outcome of the presidential election.
But that’s not the point. The point is that we need to have confidence in our elections, and no honest person can look at what’s happened in Nevada and have confidence in the vote there. In an election this irregular, with so many allegations of fraud and evidence to back them up, President Trump and his supporters deserve their day in court. At least in Nevada, it looks like they’ll get it.