In re Contested Election of Mallory

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Justia Opinion Summary

Respondent Arthur E. Mallory was Churchill County's district attorney. Appellant John O'Connor is an elector and registered voter within Churchill County. In this appeal, the issue before the Supreme Court was the narrow question of whether the office of district attorney is a state office for the purpose of determining whether district attorneys are subject to term limits under the "state office" portion of Article 15, Section 3(2) of the Nevada Constitution. Reviewing the Constitution as a whole, the Supreme Court's resolution of this inquiry was controlled by Article 4, Section 32 of the Constitution, which plainly declares district attorneys to be "county officers." Because Article 4, Section 32 identifies district attorneys as county officers, it follows that the office of district attorney cannot be considered a "state office" for term-limits purposes, and thus, district attorneys are not subject to term limits under the "state office" portion of Article 15, Section 3(2). Accordingly, the Court affirmed the district court's order denying appellant's petition to set aside respondent's election to a consecutive term as the Churchill County District Attorney.