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Nevada county refuses to certify primary recount results

Commissioners in Nevada’s second-most populous county voted against certifying the results of two local recounts from last month’s primary elections. Three Republican members of the five-member Washoe County Board of Commissioners voted to reject recount results for a commission seat and a local school board seat. The commission’s two Democratic members voted against rejecting the […]

Commissioners in Nevada’s second-most populous county voted against certifying the results of two local recounts from last month’s primary elections.

Three Republican members of the five-member Washoe County Board of Commissioners voted to reject recount results for a commission seat and a local school board seat.

The commission’s two Democratic members voted against rejecting the recount results.


After more than three days of counting, Washoe County’s election recount showed a change of one vote lost for GOP county commission candidate Mark Lawson and one vote gained by school board candidate Paul White.

However, both candidates still lost their races by wide margins.

Initially, three races were set for a recount. Reno City Council candidate Lily Baran withdrew her request after conservative activist Robert Beadles paid for her recount.

Beadles paid more than $150,000 to fund these three recounts.

After receiving backlash from members of the community for accepting this money, Baran posted on social media: “This doesn’t change my politics or his. This doesn’t make me an election denier.”

Two of the Republican commissioners, Jeanne Herman and Mike Clark, have consistently voted against certifying results.

They are also supported by a wider movement within the county that promotes election conspiracy theories.

County employees open ballots in the ballot opening area of the mail ballot processing room at the Washoe County Registrar of Voters office on Monday, June 3, 2024, in Reno, Nevada. Commissioners in Nevada’s second most populous county on Tuesday, July 9, 2024, refused to certify the results of two local recounts from last month’s primary, a rare move that could have implications for the presidential race in one of the nation’s most important swing states. (AP Photo/Andy Barron, File)

Republican Clara Andriola also voted against certifying the recounts, one of which involved the primary race she won.

Previously, the board voted 3-2 to certify the other races from last month’s primary, with Andriola voting in favor.

“There’s a lot of information that has been shared that, in my opinion, warrants further investigation,” Andriola said.

She mentioned several “hiccups” by the elections department and cited public commenters who voiced concerns.

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Against a backdrop of rapid turnover among election staff, the county elections department has made administrative mistakes, such as sending mail ballots to voters who opted out and misprinting local sample ballots.

While acknowledging the efforts of the county elections department, she expressed her intention to bring the certification results to other governing or judicial bodies, although the specific entity remains undecided.

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