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Stories from the KUNR newsroom and regional partners related to the 2022 elections

Democrat Aguilar beats election denier Marchant for Nevada Secretary of State

Cisco Aguilar sits at a long table with microphones by himself.
Lucia Starbuck
KUNR Public Radio
Nevada’s next Secretary of State, Democrat Cisco Aguilar at an election forum hosted by the League of Women Voters of Northern Nevada at the Brewery Arts Center in Carson City on Oct. 17, 2022.

Las Vegas attorney and Democrat Cisco Aguilar will serve as Nevada’s next Secretary of State, beating Republican Jim Marchant, a prominent 2020 election denier, according to an AP race call. Aguilar will oversee the 2024 election in Nevada.

Secretary of state is the third highest statewide office following governor and lieutenant governor. The position handles state legislative tasks like record keeping and business registration, but over the last several years has come under the public eye for its role in election supervision. This person also serves on the State Board of Prison Commissioners and the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Governing Board.

When it comes to supervising elections, Aguilar supports Nevada’s two weeks of early voting and voting by mail. He has stood by his assertion that the state’s elections are secure. During a forum, he said voter ID, or showing proof of identification to vote is a “solution to a problem that doesn’t exist.” Nevadans don’t need to show ID in most cases to vote.

Aguilar has said one of his first priorities is introducing legislation to make it a felony to harass or intimidate election workers and volunteers. Heightened security concerns have followed former President Donald Trump’s claims of a rigged-election in 2020.

Marchant supports voter ID laws, has expressed distrust for voting machines, and led the push for hand-counting paper ballots. Rural Nye County heeded that call. He also founded a coalition to help elect other MAGA Republicans to the secretary of state in other states. Those candidates lost in other battleground states such as Arizona and Michigan.

Nevada’s current Republican Secretary of State Barbara Cegavske has continuously pushed back on false claims of a rigged election, saying there is no evidence of widespread voter fraud in Nevada. Cegavske was censured from the state Republican party due to her pushing back against the “Big Lie.”

Lucia Starbuck is an award-winning journalist covering politics, focusing on democracy and solutions for KUNR Public Radio. Her goal is to provide helpful and informative coverage for everyday Nevadans.
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