Former professional wrestler “Big Dan” Rodimer and former Assemblyman Jim Marchant were leading in two closely watched and hotly contested Republican congressional primaries as of Wednesday morning, though the fate of neither race is sealed with results from the mostly-mail election scheduled to trickle in over the next week and a half.
Early primary results also pointed to possible upsets in several legislative primaries, over both candidates supported by the legislative caucuses and, in one instance, an incumbent. Former Nevada State Democratic Party Chair Roberta Lange, who was running with the blessing of the Senate Democratic Caucus, is trailing Assemblywoman Ellen Spiegel, while Republican Assemblyman Chris Edwards could be soon out of a job with Mesquite City Councilwoman Annie Black leading in her primary challenge against him.
State and county election officials posted preliminary results from the primary early Wednesday morning after long lines and lengthy wait times at limited in-person voting centers in Washoe and Clark counties held up the release of the results long after polls closed at 7 p.m. Election officials will not begin posting vote tallies until every voter in line has cast a ballot.
About 137,000 ballots in Clark County have been tallied, or approximately half of those cast in the mostly mail balloting and half of those statewide.
In Clark County, many voters arriving shortly before the 7 p.m. cutoff waited in line for up to five or six hours hours before being able to cast a ballot. The final voter — an Elvis impersonator — finished casting their ballot in Clark County around 3:09 a.m.
The state shifted to a mostly-mail primary election back in March with limited in-person voting sites amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
But Tuesday’s results aren’t the end of the process. Because mailed ballots can be counted up to 10 days after the election as long as they were postmarked by Tuesday, state officials will regularly publish updated results beginning on Thursday and until election results are certified on June 19.
Here are some of the partial results:
Nevada’s 3rd Congressional District
”Big Dan” Rodimer has a 10 point lead over former Treasurer Dan Schwartz in the GOP primary in this swingy, suburban congressional district represented by Democratic Rep. Susie Lee. As of Wednesday morning, Rodimer had secured 43.5 percent of the vote, while Schwartz had captured 32.6. Mindy Robinson, a pro-Trump political commentator, actress, and reality TV personality, trails in the race at 13.4 percent.
Lee appears to have easily cleared two Democratic primary challengers, leading with a wide 74.3-point margin.
Nevada’s 4th Congressional District
Former Assemblyman Jim Marchant has a 3.9 percentage point lead over Sam Peters, a veteran and insurance agent, in this crowded Republican primary to challenge Democratic Rep. Steven Horsford in November. Marchant leads with 33.5 percent of the votes, followed by Peters with 29.6 percent and former Miss Nevada and small business owner Lisa Song Sutton with 13.3 percent.
Three additional candidates are trailing further behind in the race. Small business owner Rebecca Wood has 6.4 percent of the vote, former congressional staffer Charles Navarro has 6.3 percent and Nye County Commissioner Leo Blundo has 5.3 percent. Entrepreneur Rosalie Bingham has 3.1 percent of the vote, while businesswoman Randi Reed has another 2.5 percent.
Horsford appears to have won his Democratic primary, where he faced five challengers. As of Wednesday morning, he leads with a wide 64.9-point margin.
Other Congressional Districts
In Nevada’s 1st Congressional District, Democratic Rep. Dina Titus appears to have won her Democratic primary, where she faced two challengers. As of Wednesday morning, she had secured 86.4 percent of the vote. Republican Joyce Bentley leads in the GOP primary by 7.7 percentage points. However, because of the overwhelming Democratic voter registration advantage in the district, Titus is likely to easily win re-election in November.
Republican Rep. Mark Amodei also appears to have easily won the GOP primary in Nevada’s 2nd Congressional District, where he faced two challengers. He led with 81.3 percent of the vote as of Wednesday morning.
Patricia Ackerman, a former independent undercover FBI agent, actress, small business owner and Democratic hopeful, leads in the Democratic primary in the district over Clint Koble, former state executive director for the U.S. Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency, by 27.2 percentage points as of Wednesday morning. Ackerman has 49.4 percent of votes, followed by Koble at 22.2 percent.
State Senate District 7
Democratic Assemblywoman Ellen Spiegel holds a 7.5 percentage point lead over former Nevada State Democratic Party Chair Roberta Lange in the race to represent this eastern Las Vegas and Henderson Senate district. As of Wednesday morning, Spiegel had secured 40.3 percent of the vote, followed by Lange at 32.7 percent and Assemblyman Richard Carrillo with 27 percent.
If Spiegel wins the race, it will represent a significant upset for the Nevada Senate Democratic Caucus, which had endorsed Lange. Spiegel significantly outraised both Lange and Carrillo in the race in the first quarter and had a massive war chest on hand.
Assembly District 2
Heidi Kasama, managing broker of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices-Nevada Properties, is leading in this crowded Republican primary to replace longtime Republican Assemblyman John Hambrick with 48.1 percent of the vote, or a 24.7 percent point lead, as of Wednesday morning. Erik Sexton, who works in commercial real estate, trails with 23.3 percent of the vote, followed by Jim Small, a retired member of the U.S. Senior Executive Service, with 20.1 percent.
Kasama is running with the backing of the Assembly Republican Caucus, while Sexton was endorsed by Las Vegas City Councilwoman Michele Fiore and former North Las Vegas Mayor Mike Montandon. Small had the support of former congressional candidate and businessman Danny Tarkanian and conservative commentator Wayne Allyn Root, among others.
Kasama significantly outraised her opponents in the first quarter, and the Alliance for Property Protection Rights PAC, which is funded by the National Association of REALTORS Fund, inserted itself into the GOP primary in support of her bid.
On the Democratic side, Jennie Sherwood, a journeywoman electrician, holds a narrow, 4 percentage point lead over Radhika “RPK” Kunnel, a law school student and former cancer biology professor. As of Wednesday morning, Sherwood had secured 34.3 percent of the vote, Kunnel had 30.3 percent and Democrat Eva Littman, had 25 percent.
Republicans have a good shot of keeping control of this seat come November, given the 2.3 percentage point voter registration advantage they hold in this district. The Assembly Democratic Caucus did not endorse in the primary.
Assembly District 4
Former Assemblyman Richard McArthur holds a 9.7 percentage point lead over Donnie Gibson, the owner of both a construction and equipment rental company in the GOP primary in this northwest Las Vegas Assembly district. As of Wednesday morning, McArthur had 54.9 percent of the vote to Gibson’s 45.1 percent.
McArthur, a former FBI special agent, has served three non-consecutive terms in the Assembly, two terms between 2008 and 2012 and one term from 2016 to 2018. Gibson, however, ran with the backing of the Assembly Republican Caucus in the primary.
The winner of the Republican primary will go on to face Democratic Assemblywoman Connie Munk, who did not draw a primary challenger. She won against McArthur in 2018 with a 120-vote margin out of nearly 30,000 votes cast.
Assembly District 16
Community activist Cecelia González is leading in this four-way Democratic primary to replace Democratic Assemblywoman Heidi Swank, who has represented the district since 2012 and opted not to run for re-election.
As of Wednesday morning, González had secured 47.5 percent of the vote, followed by Joe Sacco, a union trade show and conventions worker with IATSE Local 720 and a REALTOR, with 22.6 percent of the vote. Russell Davis, a two-decade Clark County employee and SEIU member, and online finance professor Geoffrey VanderPal trailed with 17.1 percent and 12.7 percent of the vote, respectively.
González and Davis had split the endorsement from major Democratic-aligned groups in the race. Both candidates were endorsed by the Nevada State AFL-CIO, while González was also endorsed by the Nevada State Education Association, the Culinary Union and the Nevada Conservation League, and Davis was endorsed by SEIU Local 110. The Assembly Democratic Caucus did not endorse in the primary.
The winner of the Democratic primary will likely go on to win the general election against the one Republican in the race, Reyna “Alex” Sajdak, because of the overwhelming voter registration advantage Democrats have in the district.
Assembly District 18
Lisa Ortega, a master arborist and owner of Great Basin Sage Consulting, is leading in this four-way Democratic primary to replace Assemblyman Richard Carrillo, who is running for state Senate.
As of Wednesday morning, Ortega lead with 42.1 percent of the vote, followed by Venicia Considine, an attorney with Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada, with 36.5 percent of the vote and Char Frost, a former campaign manager and legislative staffer for Carrillo, with 14.8 percent of the vote.
If Ortega wins, it will be a significant upset over Considine, who was running not only with the backing of the Assembly Democratic Caucus but SEIU Local 1107, Nevada State Education Association, Planned Parenthood Votes Nevada, the Culinary Union and the Nevada Conservation League. Considine had also raised nearly one and a half times as much as Ortega during the first quarter of the year.
Assembly District 19
Assemblyman Chris Edwards may be heading for defeat as Mesquite City Councilwoman Annie Black leads by a substantial 15.5 percentage points in her primary challenge against him. As of Wednesday morning, Black had 57.7 percent of the vote to Edwards’ 42.3 percent.
Black has been running to the right of the already conservative Edwards, who has served in the Assembly for three terms. A victory by Black would represent a significant upset in the race.
Whoever wins the primary will go on to win the general election in November, as there are no Democrats or third-party candidates in the race.
Assembly District 20
UNLV law professor David Orentlicher, who was running with the backing of the Assembly Democratic Caucus, is trailing Emily Smith, the CEO of the Nevada Blind Children’s Foundation, in the Democratic primary in this race to replace Assemblywoman Ellen Spiegel, who is running for state Senate.
As of Wednesday morning, Smith had 43.2 percent of the vote, while Orentlicher had 39.8 percent. Orentlicher raised about $5,000 in the first quarter of the year and had about $23,000 in cash on hand, while Smith raised only about $1,000 and had only $700 in the bank.
If Smith wins, it will be a significant upset over Orentlicher, who ran with the backing of almost all of the major Democratic-aligned organizations, including the Nevada State AFL-CIO, SEIU Local 1107, the Culinary Union, Planned Parenthood Votes Nevada, NARAL Pro-Choice Nevada and the Nevada Conservation League.
Assembly District 21
Attorney Elaine Marzola is leading with 43.6 percentage points over David Bagley, the director of operations for the stem cell diagnostics company Pluripotent Diagnostics and was also Marianne Williamson’s Nevada state director for her presidential campaign last year, in this Democratic primary to replace Assemblyman Ozzie Fumo, who is running for Nevada Supreme Court.
Marzola received most of the Democratic-aligned endorsement in the primary, including from the Assembly Democratic Caucus, the Nevada State AFL-CIO, Planned Parenthood Votes Nevada, the Culinary Union and the Nevada Conservation League. Bagley ran with the support of the Nevada State Education Association.
The winner of the primary will go on to face Republican Cherlyn Arrington in the general election, though Democrats hold a significant voter registration advantage in the district. Fumo defeated Arrington by 12.6 percentage points in 2018.
Assembly District 31
Former Assemblywoman Jill Dickman leads by 21.9 percentage points in a three-way Republican primary to represent this Northern Nevada Assembly district. As of Wednesday morning, Dickman had 53.8 percent of the vote, followed by Washoe County Republican Party treasurer Sandra Linares with 31.9 percent of the vote.
Dickman is hoping to reclaim the seat she held for one term and lost by fewer than 50 votes to Democratic Assemblyman Skip Daly in 2016. Daly did not face any primary challengers in the race.
Assembly District 36
Assemblyman Greg Hafen holds a narrow lead over challenger Dr. Joseph Bradley in the Republican primary in this rural Nevada Assembly district. Hafen was appointed to the seat after brothel owner Dennis Hof died weeks before the election but still won the seat.
Hafen, a fifth generation Nevadan and general manager of a Pahrump water utility company, had 52.6 percent of the vote as of Wednesday morning, while Bradley had 47.4 percent.
The winner of the primary is essentially guaranteed to go on to win the general election as no Democrats or candidates from other parties filed to run for the seat.
Assembly District 37
Andy Matthews, former president of the Nevada Policy Research Institute, holds a significant 18.3 percentage point lead over former television reporter and congressional candidate Michelle Mortensen in the GOP primary in this swingy Summerlin Assembly district. As of Wednesday morning, Matthews had 47.1 percent of the vote, while Mortensen had 28.8 percent.
Matthews secured a long list of endorsements in the primary, including from former Attorney General Adam Laxalt, several Trump campaign officials including Corey Lewandowski, Las Vegas City Councilwoman Michele Fiore and several current and former state lawmakers. He also was a top legislative fundraiser in the primary, outraising all other Republican Assembly candidates, including current office holders.
The winner of the primary will go on to challenge the incumbent, Democrat Shea Backus, who won the seat from Republican Assemblyman Jim Marchant by 135 votes in 2018. Democrats hold a narrow 2.2 percentage point voter registration advantage in the district, making it one of the swingiest Assembly seats this election cycle.
Nevada Supreme Court
District Judge Doug Herndon has a 10,000-vote lead over Assemblyman Ozzie Fumo in a state Supreme Court race, but appears unlikely to get more than 50 percent to end the race in the primary.
Incumbent Kristina Pickering is far ahead of her competitors, with 58 percent of the vote compared with 20 percent for Esther Rodriguez.
Clark County Commission
Assemblyman William McCurdy has a massive lead in a crowded Democratic field seeking to succeed Clark County Commissioner Lawrence Weekly in District D. Trailing McCurdy are Tanya Flanagan, then North Las Vegas City Councilman Isaac Barron and state Sen. Mo Denis, who has just under 10 percent of the vote.
Former Secretary of State Ross Miller has a commanding lead in the race to replace termed-out Commissioner Larry Brown. Miller has about 43 percent of the vote, far ahead of his next closest competitor, Hunter Cain, who has 18 percent of the vote.
Reno City Council
- Councilman Devon Reese, who is seeking to retain an at-large seat for which all Reno voters have a say, has nearly 15,000 votes and is far ahead of challenger Eddie Lorton who has close to 10,000 votes.
- Councilwoman Jenny Brekhus is about 800 votes ahead of challenger J.D. Drakulich in a race for a seat representing Ward 1. In third place is Britton Griffith, who was endorsed by Mayor Hillary Schieve but has less than half the votes of Brekhus.
- Councilwoman Neoma Jardon has a wide lead over three opponents in the race for the Ward 5 seat.
Sparks City Council
- Incumbent Donald Abbott has the lead in the race for Ward 1, with 735 votes, several hundred ahead of his next closest competitor, Wendy Stolyarov.
- Appointed incumbent Paul Anderson has a clear lead in the race to retain his Ward 3 seat. His more than 1,300 votes put him far ahead of his next closest competitor, activist Elvira Diaz, who has 470 votes.
Clark County School Board
- In District A, Lisa Guzman leads with 27 percent of the vote, followed by Liberty Leavitt with 18 percent.
- In District B, Katie Williams — a candidate who garnered attention as an outspoken conservative who resisted social distancing guidance early in the pandemic — leads with 27 percent of the vote. Union business manager Jeff Proffitt is in second place with nearly 18 percent.
- In District C, Barbara Dreyer is ahead with 22 percent of the vote, with Evelyn Garcia Morales in a close second with about 20 percent of the vote.
- In District E, incumbent Lola Brooks has a modest lead with 22 percent of the vote, ahead of her next closest competitor, Christopher Craig, who has about 16 percent.
Washoe County School Board
- Incumbent Scott Kelley has the advantage in the race to keep his District A seat, with about 5,300 votes, Challengers Jeff Church and Lisa Genasci are in a close race for second place.
- Kurt Thigpen is dominating in the race for District D. With more than 6,200 votes, he is well ahead of his next closest competitor Stan Berk, who has about 3,300 votes.
- Diane Nicolet has nearly double the vote count of her next closest competitor in the at-large District G seat. Her more than 14,000 votes put her far ahead of Craig Wesner, who is in second place with close to 8,000 votes.
Board of Regents
- Former Regent Kevin Melcher has nearly 30 percent of the vote in the District 10 seat centered in Reno, while Joseph Arrascada is in second place with about 22 percent of the vote. Vince Lombardi and Andrew Diss are in third and fourth, respectively.
- Patrick Boylan has 37 percent of the vote compared with Kevin Child’s 32 percent in the race for Southern Nevada’s District 5, a seat left open after the death of Regent Sam Lieberman this spring.
- Byron Brooks holds a wide lead in the race for Southern Nevada’s District 3, with nearly 35 percent of the vote. Lachelle Fisher is in second with 23 percent, and former Assemblyman Stephen Silberkraus is in third with 22 percent.
Nevada State Board of Education
- District 3 incumbent Felicia Ortiz has 61 percent of the vote, a wide lead over her next-closest competitor, Bruce James-Newman, who has 27 percent.
- District 4 incumbent Mark Newburn is in a tight race with Rene Cantu. Newburn has 38 percent, compared with 37 percent for Cantu.
- Katie Coombs had no competitors in her race for Northern Nevada’s District 2 seat.
- In Southern Nevada’s District 1, Tim Hughes has 37 percent compared with 23 percent for Angelo Casino.
Douglas County Commission
- Incumbent Dave Nelson is locked in a tight race with challenger Danny Tarkanian for the District 1 Republican primary. Nelson is ahead by 30 votes of the nearly 11,000 counted so far.
- Mark Gardner leads Larry Walsh by more than 2,000 votes in the District 3 race.
- Walt Nowosad is ahead of Nathan Tolbert by several hundred votes in District 5.
Carson City Mayor & Supervisors
- Lori Bagwell has a commanding lead in her race for mayor, with 52 percent of the vote. Jim Shirk is in second, with 22 percent of the vote.
- It’s a close three-way race for Ward 2 supervisor. Maurice “Mo” White has 33 percent of the vote, compared with Stacie Wilke-McCulloch’s 31 percent and Ronni Hannaman’s 30 percent.
- Lisa Schuette ran away with the Ward 4 supervisor race, garnering 67 percent of the vote compared to 18 percent for second place competitor Ronald Bratsch.
More results here.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.