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GOP Senate candidate 'kind of hoping' US military will intervene in 2024 elections

Right-wing election denier Jim Marchant lost his bid for Nevada secretary of state in 2022.

By Josh Israel - May 17, 2023
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Jim Marchant
Jim Marchant speaks at an event to announce his candidacy for the U.S. Senate seat in Nevada, Tuesday, May 2, 2023, in Las Vegas. Marchant, a former state Assembly member who also lost a bid for Congress three years ago, raised his national profile last year as the organizer of a coalition of 17 GOP candidates who maintained that the 2020 presidential election was stolen from Donald Trump. (AP Photo/John Locher)

Nevada Republican Jim Marchant, a former one-term state legislator and his party’s unsuccessful 2022 nominee for secretary of state, said on his campaign website that he supports a total overhaul of the election system in the state. In a March interview, the U.S. Senate hopeful endorsed the idea of military intervention in the 2024 elections.

Marchant, a right-wing election denier, announced on May 2 that he will seek the GOP nomination to challenge first-term Democratic Sen. Jacky Rosen in 2024. “We have to encourage principled America-first MAGA candidates to run for office,” he told attendees at his kickoff event. “That is why I’m announcing today that I am running for United States Senate.”

On March 11, weeks before announcing his candidacy, Marchant appeared on Nino’s Corner TV, retired professional boxer David “Nino” Rodrguez’s subscription-only streaming service that claims to offer “news and entertainment for people who love America.”

After repeating conspiracy theories about “election integrity,” Rodriguez asked Marchant, “What’s happening behind the scenes right now to make us believe that this can go into 2024 and be fair?”

Marchant answered: 

You pose the question, what’s going on that might help us affect the 2024 election and have a fair and transparent election? And what I am concentrating on is doing the things that we need to do to ensure that we have a process in ’24, 2024, that’s fair and transparent. You know, you’d mentioned that there’s the possibility, a military type thing. That’s kind of out of my control. And I like you, I’m kind of hoping maybe something like that would happen too because that would make it a lot easier. It would make my job a lot easier. But what I can do is just try to expose what’s going on or what happened, how it got stolen, which we did. That was the whole purpose of our coalition being established in the first place, was to number one, expose how the election was stolen, and we did that.

Legal experts have said it would be illegal for the military to intervene in U.S. elections.

In a November 2020 post on the site Lawfare, U.S. Naval War College national security affairs professor Lindsay P. Cohn and University of Texas law professor Steve Vladeck examined the question of whether then-President Donald Trump could use the U.S. military to interfere with the presidential election. While acknowledging the possibility an official could abuse power, they wrote that a law passed at the end of the Civil War expressly forbids the president from sending in the military during elections.

“We have established a very long 240-year tradition of an apolitical military that does not get involved in domestic politics,” Gen. Mark Milley, chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told NPR in October 2020. “There’s no role for the U.S. military in determining the outcome of a U.S. election. Zero. There is no role there.”

A Marchant campaign spokesperson did not immediately respond to an American Independent Foundation inquiry.

The Nevada Republican has a long history of spreading widely debunked conspiracy theories.

The Associated Press reported in June 2022 that Marchant had claimed baselessly on a podcast that since 2006, every Nevada election winner had been “installed by the deep-state cabal.”

The biography page on his campaign website, which does not appear to have been updated since his failed 2022 race, claims, “In 2020 Jim ran for Congress for Nevada’s Congressional District 4 and was a victim of election fraud.”

In that race, Democratic Rep. Steven Horsford defeated Marchant by 4.9 points, 50.7%-45.8%. Marchant failed to prove actual fraud in a subsequent legal challenge.

After Trump lost Nevada to President Joe Biden in the 2020 election, Marchant endorsed an unsuccessful scheme to have fake pro-Trump electors cast Electoral College votes in place of the legitimate Biden electors.

Marchant’s website still states: “In February of 2021, Jim announced his intentions to run for Secretary of State in Nevada. His number one priority will be to overhaul the fraudulent election system in Nevada.”

Voters instead elected Democratic nominee Cisco Aguilar, by a 49%-47% vote.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.


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