Las Vegas Sun

July 30, 2014

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Ask Mr. Sun:

Can I write in candidates with electronic voting machines?

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Dear Mr. Sun,

I want to write in your name for U.S. senator, governor, assemblyman and dogcatcher. But can I do that with those newfangled electronic voting machines?

•••

I’m Mr. Sun, and I approved this message:

You can’t vote for me via a write-in campaign. Nevada’s electronic voting machines are technologically capable of accommodating write-in votes, according to Clark County Registrar Larry Lomax. But write-in voting is prohibited in Nevada.

NRS 293.270 sayeth: “Voting must be only upon candidates whose names appear upon the ballot prepared by the election officers, and no person may write in the name of an additional candidate for any office.”

That was added to the Nevada Revised Statutes in 1960. But the ban on write-in voting goes back further. According to “Political History of Nevada,” in 1891 write-in candidates were prohibited. Off point, but interesting: Ballots in that era contained a watermark that was changed for each election, private voting booths were made available and voters had just 5 minutes to mark ballots.

Questions for Mr. Sun should be sent to [email protected].

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  1. I don't favor write-ins but how does such a law square with free elections? I, you, anybody, ought to be able to vote for whomever they please in a general election, in my estimation. Another thing, when did it become the state's business to know my, your, anybody's, party affiliation? Closed primaries are a rather new concoction dreamed up by the political parties to protect their power and squelch ours. I'd be okay with it if they picked up the cost of the primaries but they don't, we do. Closed primaries are an affront to me and, I believe, unconstitutional. Where's the American Criminal Liberties Union when you need it?

  2. More and more I think that all Nevada officials should wear brown shirts, Angle may make them the official uniform.

  3. I think you made a mistake, THOMAS you meant REID right?
    Angle lost remember REID is closer than Angle to a BANANA REPUBLIC TYRANT he stole the elections.

  4. yikes! nevadans can;t write? noooooooooooo!

  5. The election is over, how about some NEW questions?

  6. That needs to change, it doesn't happen often but citizen voters have rights even in Nevada...

  7. Write in candidates? Are you kidding? They can't even get an accurate count of the people they were paid to make winners.