The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Aguilar defeats election denier Marchant in race to oversee Nev. voting

It was the latest loss for GOP candidates who campaigned on former president Donald Trump’s false insistence the 2020 election was stolen.

Democratic candidate for Nevada secretary of state Cisco Aguilar speaks with supporters at event Nov. 7 in Henderson, Nev. (David Becker/For The Washington Post)

Democrat Cisco Aguilar is projected to win Nevada’s secretary of state race, beating a Republican nominee, Jim Marchant, who sought oversight of Nevada’s elections while baselessly denying the results from 2020.

It was the latest defeat for GOP candidates who campaigned on former president Donald Trump’s false insistence the 2020 election was stolen and would have wielded power over the voting process in 2024. Marchant, who was supported by Trump, was in close competition to oversee voting in a 2024 battleground state, where the current secretary of state — a Republican — has defended the integrity of the voting process amid an onslaught of baseless claims.

Aguilar, who chairs the board of trustees for a school in North Las Vegas, campaigned on making voting more accessible and said he would “protect our democracy.”

Marchant was one of several election-denier candidates around the country nominated for secretary of state this year. In Michigan, GOP nominee Kristina Karamo — who promoted false claims about the 2020 election — lost by 14 points. In Arizona, Republican state lawmaker Mark Finchem — who wanted to decertify the 2020 vote and sought to ban voting machines — on Friday was projected to lose to Democrat Adrian Fontes.

Tracking which 2020 election deniers are winning, losing in the midterms

Many other candidates who took up Trump’s false election claims have prevailed. A majority of GOP nominees for House, Senate and key statewide offices this year — 291 total — have denied or questioned the outcome of the 2020 presidential election, The Washington Post found. As of Friday, most of them were projected to win.

Strategists in both parties believed a good year for Republicans could lift even candidates with extreme views such as Marchant to victory. But Republican hopes of a red wave have not come to fruition as Democrats grow increasingly optimistic about the overall outcome of the midterms.