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Nevada judge denies Trump campaign lawsuit seeking to toss election results

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President Donald Trump waves as he boards Air Force One at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas on Monday, Sept. 14, 2020. (Video via pool)

LAS VEGAS (KSNV) — A Nevada judge has denied a lawsuit spearheaded by President Donald Trump's re-election campaign seeking to toss the results of the state's presidential vote.

District Judge James T. Russell denied the contest with prejudice, meaning it cannot be brought back before the court.

"The contestants failed to meet their burden to provide credible and relevant evidence to substantiate any of the grounds set forth in [state law] to contest the November 3, 2020 general election," the order states.

The complaint had sought to either move Nevada's presidential electors to Trump or to find the results of the presidential election void.

Democratic former Vice President Joe Biden won Nevada's race against the incumbent Republican president, 50.06% of the vote to 47.67%.

Attorneys for both sides spent hours arguing Thursday before Judge Russell in Carson City District Court, with some appearing virtually.

Jesse Binnall, representing Trump's appointed Nevada electors, argued there were thousands of illegally cast votes, with people filling out multiple ballots, voting from out of state or using the names of those deceased.

Binnall also continued the campaign's claim that the Agilis machine used in Clark County to verify signatures had a low tolerance setting that verified non-matching signatures on mail-in ballots. That argument has been used in other suits filed in state and federal court to no avail.

Kevin Hamilton, who represented the Democratic electors named as defendants, countered that the election was fair and that the Republican electors' contest of the results was without merit.

In his order, Judge Russell noted that much of the plaintiffs' evidence came in the form of witness declarations, which are considered hearsay.

"Most of these declarations were self-serving statements of little or no evidentiary value," wrote Russell, who also questioned testimony from three expert witnesses, saying their methodology was either "unsound" or lacked "verification" and "quality control."

He ruled the Republicans "did not prove under any standard of proof" their allegations regarding the Agilis machine or that a large swath of people illegally voted or cast multiple ballots.

The Nevada GOP said in a statement Friday they would appeal the ruling to the state Supreme Court.

"While we appreciate the court's consideration of evidence submitted, we disagree with the dismissal of the contest," the Nevada Republican Party said. "The case and evidence we presented was compelling and overwhelming."

Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford applauded the order, saying in a statement that Trump's team "provided insufficient proof to support their claims in court, which explains why they keep losing."

"Because I take fraud claims seriously, I have personally requested that President Trump's team, including former Attorney General Adam Laxalt, file an official complaint and supporting evidence with my office," Ford said. "They have yet to send in a complaint that details and provides evidence for the allegations they have publicly been making."

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