Nevada: Documenting the 2012 Vote

Note: This page covers information specific to Nevada. For general information regarding legal issues associated with documenting your vote, see the Documenting the Vote 2012 page.

Photography Inside the Polling Place

In general, photography at the polling place is not allowed. NRS § 293.274 prohibits the general public from "photograph[ing] the conduct of voting at a polling place or record[ing] the conduct of voting on audiotape or any other means of sound or video reproduction." A specific exception is made for a person who "gathers information for communication to the public; . . . [i]s employed or engaged by or has contracted with a newspaper, periodical, press association, or radio or television station; and . . . [i]s acting solely within his or her professional capacity." Thus, even if you are regularly employed as a professional journalist, Nevada might prohibit you recording your own vote, on the theory that in that moment you are not acting "solely within" your professional capacity.

Photography Outside the Polling Place

NRS 293.740 prohibits those in the polling place or "within 100 feet from the entrance to the building or other structure in which a polling place is located" from, among other things, "speak[ing] to a voter on the subject of marking the voter’s ballot." This would seem to prohibit any interviewing of voters within 100 feet of the polling place, but in 2006 a group of media organizations (ABC, CBS, NBC Universal, Fox, CNN, and the AP) sued to prevent application of this statute to exit polling conducted by those organizations. The lawsuit resulted in a preliminary injunction, which was followed by a stipulation for a permanent injunction preventing application of NRS 293.740 to exit polling conducted by those organizations. It is unclear whether the Secretary of State extends this to other media organizations or independent newsgatherers as well.

Recording Your Own Ballot

Aside from the general prohibition on photography and other recording noted above, a separate section of Nevada law prohibits voters from showing their ballot "to any person, after voting, so as to reveal any of the names voted for.” NRS 293.730(e). Thus both the act of recording your vote as well as the act of disseminating that recording to any person violate Nevada law. 


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