The Nevada Caucus Was A Breeding Ground For Dirty Tactics And Cheating

by
Kate Brown
The caucus went horribly awry in Nevada, with reports flooding in that are sure to make anyone’s hair stand on end – why does this seem to be a new trend?

The Reno Gazette-Journal (RGJ) reports that there were “long lines” and “too few ballots,” causing an array of problems that seem to have left more than enough room for candidates to use dirty tactics and possibly even cheating to get ahead. 

Reports of caucus locations having too few ballots are widespread, which caused many voters to wait in incredibly long lines for hours. Disabled voters at precinct 2008, Cheyenne High School were forced to leave since they weren’t prepared to stand for long periods of time as problems continued to arise.

Computer problems also forced volunteers to re-register most (if not all) caucus voters, creating lines that were unreasonably long: “I pre-registered, came here at 9:48 am and finally got to my caucus group at 11:30. Still waiting for someone to start this party,” Lenita Powers told RGJ. “Caucus volunteers are frustrated but very helpful and trying to keep us on-track and upbeat.”

In a forum created to report misgivings and irregularities at the caucus in Nevada, Reddit user SamBoeres posted a photo of a “Hillary For Nevada” logo in the left-hand corner of sign-in sheet at precinct 5616. Allegedly, the person who was handing out the sign-in sheet said that it was “for the Democratic party.”

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In fact, there are even reports of people voting for Hillary without even registering. When one person asked a volunteer about it, they said that the participants would register after caucusing.

Perhaps the most disturbing report of all, however, would be from Reddit user PPG113, who was caucusing at precinct 6686. Allegedly, one precinct volunteer seemed to be working “in tandem” with the Clinton campaign, recording PPG113’s ballot as being for Hillary Clinton even though it was expressly intended for Bernie Sanders:

[R]egistered early, followed directions at my caucus location. Had to reregister and the person copying my info attempted to marked me down for a differnt [sic] person than I told them. Only corrected after bringing it up 3 times…

The Volunteer was at the express desk, and no one seemed to know that were SUPPOSE to also still allow Democratic party registration, though that is a different matter. Said volunteer clicked on Hillary on his screen when I told him clearly Bernie, he froze, and on my third repeat, he corrected it as I stared at him. What, if anything it changes, I do not know since it was not my ballet [sic] sheet he was marking. After an hour or so, he happened to walk into my precinct and to the Hillary group’s tables.

The GOP wan’t having much luck in this caucus either.

Among reports that the Republican caucus voters “have no way to caucus now because the GOP requires registering about a week before caucus day” (however, Democratic caucus voters can register the day of), POLITICO reports that “the state party kept no complete list of the 2012 caucus-goers, forcing campaigns to start from scratch in identifying potential voters.”

"It’s true, the smartest people just don’t know what’s going to happen here,” Pete Ernaut, a Republican consultant who is unaffiliated with a presidential campaign, told POLITICO. “Nevada loves to be independent, but that can also get in the way of being organized and coalesced around an important event, so it doesn’t surprise me at all.”

“There’s always a potential for things to be chaotic,” said Nick Phillips, the former political director of the Clark County GOP. “If we had a party that was up advertising and up on TV, telling people how to caucus, then we might not have as many problems and might see more turnout, but that’s not happening.”

With so much confusion and deceit such as this, can we really trust what is reported by the Nevada caucus? Similar reports abounded at the Iowa caucus, leading many to suspect that Clinton was cheating. One would hope that there would be provisions put in place to ensure that these problems wouldn't continually arise at every caucus, but it seems to only be getting worse. 

Banner Image Credit: Jason Hidalgo/Twitter

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