NATIONAL NEWS

Nevada voter ID initiative can appear on 2024 ballot with enough signatures, state high court says

May 24, 2024, 5:02 PM

ELKO, Nev. (AP) — An initiative that would amend the Nevada Constitution to require that voters show photo identification at the polls can appear on the 2024 ballot as long as organizers collect enough signatures, the state Supreme Court ruled Friday.

Organizers must gather just over 100,000 valid signatures by June 26 for it to be eligible. The measure would then have to be passed by voters this year and again in 2026 to take effect.

The initiative also calls for an extra layer of verification for mail ballots, such as the last four digits of a driver’s license or Social Security number.

The high court’s unanimous decision upheld a lower court ruling that the ballot measure does not have an unfunded mandate and is descriptive enough to inform voters of its effect.

Jennifer Fleischmann of the progressive immigrant advocacy group Make the Road Nevada sued in December to block the initiative.

Voter ID has been a contentious issue in the Western swing state. Republican Gov. Joe Lombardo outlined it as one of his main priorities last year, but Democrats who control the Legislature refused to give it a hearing.

In a statement, Lombardo applauded Friday’s ruling.

David Gibbs of political action committee Repair the Vote, which is behind the initiative, said organizers have continued gathering signatures with the expectation that they would prevail in court and anticipate meeting the deadline.

“We will have everything we need, definitely in the next three weeks,” Gibbs said.

The signature drive has involved outreach by going door-to-door and attending large GOP events, such as February’s Republican presidential caucuses.

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Stern is a corps member for the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a service program that places journalists in local newsrooms. Follow Stern on X: @gabestern326.

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