Election contest filed in Nevada

An area businessman has filed a contest of the Nov. 2 election, saying that Nevadans who were denied the right to vote because of flawed registration practices should be allowed to vote before the results are declared final and official.

The contest filed Tuesday in Washoe County District Court by Rick Newell Davis of Minden alleges there were "massive irregularities and malfunctions in the registration process" and thousands of potential voters may have been disenfranchised.

The contest names the six Republican electors who are to meet following the state Supreme Court's Nov. 23 canvass of the election and officially give President Bush Nevada's five electoral votes.

The electors include Joe Brown and Milton Schwartz of Las Vegas, John Marvel of Battle Mountain, Bev Willard of Carson City and Paul Willis of Pahrump.

Davis, who just changed his registration from Democrat to Republican, said Wednesday the contest wasn't filed for partisan purposes, adding, "Whether you're a Democrat or a Republican doesn't matter. All the people should be concerned about election misconduct."

In the court filing, Davis said Washoe County District Judge Brent Adams on Election Day ordered that voters whose registration papers hadn't been turned in should be allowed to vote that day, reasoning that election officials and not the "citizen-victims" should bear the burden for the registration flaws.

The contest has been assigned to Judge Adams, and Davis said the judge could expand his order to allow all victims of faulty registration to still vote.

The contest also notes that several members of Congress have requested a national probe into voter fraud and irregularities and, given evidence of election machine malfunctions around the country, the court should provide for an examination of Nevada's touch-screen voting machines.

Bush defeated John Kerry by 21,500 votes in Nevada, 418,690 to 397,190, but Davis said it's imperative to determine prior to the final vote canvass how many Nevadans were deprived of the right to vote as a result of activities by an organization financed by the Republican National Committee.

Some former workers for Voter Outreach of America, operated by Sproul and Associates of Phoenix, who registered voters in Nevada and other battleground states have alleged they were told to register only Republicans and to ignore pro-Kerry people.

Some said that completed Democratic registration forms were thrown out or ripped up.


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