Democrat Cisco Aguilar is projected to win Nevada’s secretary of state race, beating Republican Jim Marchant, who falsely claimed not only that the 2020 election was stolen from Donald Trump but This is a “deep state cabal” he has ruled the state since its inception.

Aguilar, the state’s former athletic commissioner, told Politico he wanted to run for the job to reform Nevada’s business filing system, but that the importance of election administration became clear after Marchant won the Republican nomination.

“When the [GOP] primary results were announced, it just hit me like a ton of bricks,” He said.

Marchant, head of a group “America First” Secretary of State candidates, who propagated the lie that the 2020 election had been stolen, is a leader in the attempt to create doubt about Republican electoral losses. He also has cultivated ties to an influential member of the QAnon conspiracy theorist movement, which supports mass arrest and execution of public figures they accuse as satanic pedophiles.

Marchant stood with the Nevada GOP’s slate of Trump “electors” seeking to overturn the state’s legitimate presidential election results in 2020, and he later said He would not have certified that Joe Biden had won the election by 33,000 votes. He also sought to reverse the results of his congressional race in that year, which was won by Joe Biden by 33,000 votes. Marchant claimed to be just like Trump. “a victim of election fraud.” He has the support of the state party: The Nevada GOP censured Barbara Cegavske, the current secretary-of-state with a limited term, was elected in part to fill that vacancy. “failing to investigate election fraud.”

Aguilar. former staffer for the late Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), had warned that a vote for Marchant would damage voters’ trust in the election process.

“Right now we have an opportunity to elect someone who will continue voter confidence or we could have someone who will tear down the system because they don’t like it and it hasn’t benefited them,” he told Nevada Current last month. “All Nevadans will suffer because of him.”

Marchant has said He was interested in running for secretary of State. “because we control the election system.” He ran for the state’s top elections official job on a record of damaging lies about American democracy.

“Your vote hasn’t counted for decades,” Marchant told listeners At a February debate, it was a few months ago Before He won the GOP primary election for secretary of state. “You haven’t elected anybody. The people that are in office have been selected. You haven’t had a choice.” He told The Guardian It was January “very possible” he’d support designating another false slate of electors in 2024.

Alarmingly, Marchant said he’d consider making every Nevadan re-register to vote ― a common 20th-century tactic for the suppression of Black voters. He has also been endorsed new voter ID requirements And called for “NO Mail-in ballots” And a ban on drop boxes. He has said he’d “like to get rid of the early voting,” Even though he supported the practice and voted early, Nevada Current reported.

Marchant also promised to decertify Dominion machines voting machines, which were demonized and used for election purposes. majority Nevada counties.

During his campaign Aguilar positioned him as a business-friendly Democrat. telling The Nevada Independent That the state should keep its status as the “Delaware of the West.” He also stressed the importance of independent election administration throughout this race. This was in contrast to Marchant who stated that Trump would return the White House in 2024, if he or others from the right win their secretary of states races this year.

The state’s top elections official, Aguilar told Nevada Current, should be “someone who is neutral and impartial to what the actual outcome is and listening to voters in Nevada, versus saying ‘this is the outcome I want and I’m going to influence it to that direction,’ which my opponent will absolutely do, and has stated on the record that’s what he will do.”

Even though he lost to Aguilar in the end, Marchant already has an impact. After being a pitch from Marchant, Nevada’s Nye County attempted to hand-count its 2022 mail-in ballots as they arrived to election officials. Cegavske and the state’s Supreme Court intervened Stop the exercise. The hand count happened, but it didn’t go well: The Associated Press reported last month that it took 60 volunteers a full day to count just 900 ballots, and that the effort was stalled by repeated mismatches in various volunteers’ ballot tallies.

Marchant is a founding member of the America First Secretary of State Coalition ― members include the GOP secretary of state nominees in Michigan, Arizona and New Mexico, and Pennsylvania gubernatorial nominee Doug Mastriano ― which also points to his involvement with QAnon conspiracy theorists. He started The group With a QAnon influencer who lives by “Juan O. Savin,” Who has spoken out about a plan to transform Washington, D.C., as a wire-covered war zone “like they did in Fallujah,” The Daily Beast reported.

Savin proposed to screen the city’s inhabitants, and then, he said, “anybody that’s still left in the city after three days, you’re an enemy combatant. We’re gonna come get ya. You can come out or we can blow you out, we can drag you out, you’re coming out of there one way or another.”

Marchant declared that he loved Savin during a speech he gave last October. “couldn’t stress enough” how important he believed this year’s secretary of state elections were.

“We control the election system, just like George Soros and Harry Reid knew,” he said. “So we’re going to counter-reverse what they did. And in 2022, we’re going to take back our country.”