Nevada Democrats plan to punish double voters allowed by legal loophole
An e-mail sent out by College Republicans at University of Nevada, Reno informed its members of a loophole within the caucus system that would allow citizens to vote twice. The loophole, as explained by Ralston Reports, stems from the fact that Nevada’s Democratic and Republican caucuses take place on different days. The Democrats are scheduled for February 20 and Republicans will vote on February 23.
Although Nevada uses a closed caucus system (only Republicans can vote in the Republican caucus and vice versa) the issue is voter registration. Republicans closed their registration on February 13 and those records are the ones that will be used on February 23. However, the Democratic Party allows same-day registration on the February 20 Therefore, a Republican could switch to the Democratic Party at the caucus site without it affecting the paperwork received by the Republican Party for their respective caucus.
Press release from UNR College Republicans suggesting members could caucus twice: pic.twitter.com/L5fnGS2JrU— Jennifer Epstein (@jeneps) February 19, 2016
In a statement to the Huffington Post, Miranda Hoover, president of the College Republicans chapter, said, “asking individuals to participate in both is not a normal activity but it is also not illegal; nobody will get arrested,” but Nevada’s Democratic leaders beg to differ.
Nevada Democratic Chairwoman Roberta Lange released a statement saying, “After reviewing Nevada law, we believe that registering under false pretenses in order to participate in the Democratic caucuses for purposes of manipulating the presidential nominating process is a felony.” She also added, "The Nevada State Democratic Party will work with law enforcement to prosecute anyone who falsely registers as a Democrat to caucus tomorrow and subsequently participates in the Republican caucuses on Tuesday.”
Roberta Lange is not the only Democrat that is not amused by Republicans interfering with their caucus. Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) released a statement calling the plan to interfere with the vote, “shameful and immoral,” adding “The Republican Party has long decried voter fraud, but with this latest scheme they are now encouraging it."
Although Miranda Hoover claims that she was merely pointing out the loophole, other College Republican chapters have made efforts to distance themselves from the actions of the Reno chapter. The Universty of Nevada, Las Vegas chapter released a statement calling Hoover’s actions an attempt “to subvert the electoral process during the Nevada caucuses." Julian Batz, president of the Las Vegas chapter added "As a millennial Republican I expect more from my counterpart, and would hope that both the Nevada Democratic and Republican Parties will take steps to ensure that Miranda's malevolent efforts are not tolerated."