Nevada judge dismisses lawsuit against Trump voters, citing jurisdiction

A Nevada judge on Friday dismissed a lawsuit against six Republicans who falsely submitted affidavits claiming Donald Trump won the 2020 election.

Clark County District Court Judge Mary Kay Holthus ruled the case should have been filed in another county. Prosecutors said they would appeal his verdict.

Trump supporters in Nevada and six states won by President Biden sent official-looking documents to Congress claiming Trump was the real winner. In Nevada, they were charged in December with filing and uttering a false instrument, which carries a maximum penalty of nine years in prison. Among those accused is Nevada GOP Chairman Michael J. McDonald’s included.

The judge issued his ruling from the bench after Republican lawyers argued that the case should have been filed elsewhere because the rally of Trump voters took place in Carson City, more than 400 miles from Las Vegas.

A spokeswoman for Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford told The Washington Post that the state plans to appeal the judge’s decision “immediately.” The statute of limitations expired shortly after the lawsuit was filed in Clark County, making it impossible to file the lawsuit again in another jurisdiction.

An appeal goes to the state Supreme Court, which can decide the case or send it to a lower appellate court. In short, it could take several months and it is unlikely that a decision will be made before the November election.

Attorneys for the Nevada Republicans said they were pleased with Friday’s decision and would turn their attention to the state’s appeal.

“The judge followed the law and correctly determined that Clark County did not have jurisdiction,” said attorney Monty Levy. “I am very confident that our Nevada Supreme Court will uphold Judge Holthus’ decision.”

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In four other states — Arizona, Georgia, Michigan and Wisconsin — Republicans involved in caucuses face separate charges from local or state prosecutors. Their cases will not be affected by Friday’s ruling.

Republicans in the remaining states, Pennsylvania and New Mexico, were not charged. Unlike other states, the documents they submitted included language that said their electoral votes would only be counted if Trump was determined to be the actual winner.

Amy Gardner and Hayden Godfrey contributed to this report.

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