The first rule of Las Vegas is, the house always wins. Donald Trump's campaign made the case Tueday that the presidential election in Sin City's home county might be rigged.
The court didn't agree. On Tuesday afternoon, a state court judge quickly and somewhat angrily dismissed the Trump campaign's lawsuit seeking to put some early ballots on hold for no discernible reason.
Here's what went down: On Tueday, the Trump campaign alleged that the Clark County Registrar of Voters - which runs elections in the heavily Hispanic, heavily Democratic Las Vegas area - kept the polls open for early voting "two hours beyond ... closing time." Trump's complaint alleged election officials allowed people at one early-voting location in the Las Vegas area to get in line until 10 p.m., two hours after the 8 p.m.
In lawsuit, Trump campaign alleges Registrar's actions "very much appear to have been intentionally coordinated with Democratic activists." pic.twitter.com/US6ZZjlJyu— Megan Messerly (@meganmesserly) November 8, 2016
To rectify it, the campaign wanted county election officials to essentially impound the ballots in question to use as evidence "in the event of post-election challenges." They also wanted the names of the poll workers released.
The county's response: It was going to hold on to those ballots anyway (after they were counted), because, well, that's the law.
Clark County statement after judge denies Trump request on early voting site data pic.twitter.com/ltqQsOEUXk— Michelle Rindels (@RindelsAP) November 8, 2016
Also, county attorneys noted that it is long-standing practice during early voting in Nevada to allow people to vote until the lines are done, no matter what time people joined that line. (The rules are different on Election Day itself, when you have to be in line by the time the polls close to cast your ballot.)
"if a line still exists, you can get in that line...different (rules) than Election Day," county counsel says.— Jon Ralston (@RalstonReports) November 8, 2016
In other words, the county said it didn't break any rules. And, as such, a judge saw zero reason to grant Trump's campaign a court order impounding ballots that were cast legally and that officials have no intent of opening.
"I am not going to issue any order," Judge Gloria Sturman said.
And then Sturman let the Trump campaign's attorneys have it for even bringing suit in the first place.
For one, the order doesn't make sense, she said. County officials can't open the ballots to figure out who voted at what time and then sequester those votes.
"It seems to go against the very principle that the vote is secret." -- Judge Sturman.— Jon Ralston (@RalstonReports) November 8, 2016
And two, releasing the names of the poll workers at this location could open them up to harassment and, in Sturman's word, "trolls."
"I am not going to expose people doing their civic duty to help their fellow citizens vote ... to public attention, ridicule and harassment," she said.
"These are people who give up their time," she continued. "It's disturbing to me that those individuals might be harassed. ... Do you watch Twitter? Do you watch any cable news shows?"
Here's the video of the judge's rundown of Trump's attorneys. It comes from a Hillary Clinton rapid-response account, but what happens in the video corroborates reporters' account of what transpired.