Nevada county election official in charge of controversial 2022 hand-count plan resigns

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RENO, Nev. — The top elections official in a rural Nevada county roiled by false claims of widespread election fraud that led to a partial hand-count in the 2022 midterms is resigning, a county spokesperson confirmed Thursday.

The reason for Nye County Clerk Mark Kampf’s resignation is not immediately clear. He sent his resignation earlier this week, and his last day will be March 31, county spokesperson Arnold Knightly confirmed.

Kampf did not immediately respond to calls on his work and cell phones Thursday morning.

He stepped in as the county’s top election official in the wake of the county commission unanimously voting in support of ditching voting machines as false claims of widespread election fraud from the 2020 election spread through the commission chambers. They wanted every vote counted by hand, a request that made the old county clerk resign.

Kampf ended up conducting a hand-count, but that looked vastly different than the plan to make it the county’s primary vote counting method, due to regulations from then-secretary of state Barbara Cegavske’s office, and lawsuits brought forth by the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada. The county used machines as the primary vote-counting method, with a hand-count happening alongside that, acting as essentially a test-run for future elections.

The hand-count was stopped after its second day due to a legal challenge by the ACLU of Nevada amid concerns that vote counting had started before election day. They could not resume until after polls closed.

The sprawling county between Las Vegas and Reno, is home to about 50,000 residents, including about 33,000 registered voters.

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