Priorities USA-Supported Lawsuit Wins Challenge Against Restrictive Voter ID Ballot Initiative in Nevada

July 21, 2022

WASHINGTON, D.C. — In response to a lawsuit supported and funded by Priorities USA, and brought on behalf of Plaintiff Emily Persaud-Zamora, the First Judicial District Court in Nevada blocked an attempt by Republican State Senate candidate Raja Mourey to introduce a ballot initiative that sought to impose Voter ID requirements on in-person voters, as well as make it harder for lawful voters to stop their mail-in ballots from being wrongfully rejected, and for some voters to register using automatic voter registration. The lawsuit, Persaud-Zamora v. Cegavske, challenged an initiative petition filed by Mourey proposing a statutory amendment that would require in-person voters in Nevada to present a photo ID to vote. The ballot measure aimed to mislead the public to enact the strict voter ID requirements without a full understanding of the measure’s potential impact of disenfranchising vulnerable communities.

The complaint argued that the petition violated Nevada’s prohibition on unfunded mandates in initiative petitions. While the petition required the Secretary of State to issue IDs to certain categories of voters, it did so without raising any revenue to cover those costs, which could run into the millions of dollars. The court ruled that the petition violates Article 19, Section 6 of the Nevada Constitution which prohibits unfunded mandates.

“Nevada’s court has ruled in favor of their citizen’s constitutional rights. This voter ID measure would have threatened the ability of lawful voters to cast their ballot and particularly impacted communities of color,” said Guy Cecil, Chairman of Priorities USA. “Priorities USA has consistently secured relief for voters seeking to exercise their fundamental right to vote and I am proud that we are able to continue this work. It is clear that Republicans will try everything they can to restrict the rights of vulnerable communities to access the franchise and Priorities is ready to combat these anti-democratic efforts in the courts.”