Primary Early Voting occurs May 23, 2020 to June 5, 2020. Election Day is June 9, 2020.
FOR JUDGE | DEPT. 15
"Fight for the things that you care
about but do so in a way that
will lead others to join you."
–Ruth Bader Ginsburg
As a woman with a passion for long-distance relay races, Tegan Christine Machnich knows all about having to be quick, aggressive, and willing to fight hard until the end. Now, in the toughest race she’s ever ran, Machnich plans on applying those same principles to beat out her opponents in the upcoming judicial election. She is running for a seat as the Las Vegas District Court Judge in Department 15.
Tegan grew up in a northern suburb of Chicago, Illinois, and she knew that she wanted to pursue a career as a trial lawyer after participating in mock trials during high school. Even as a young child, Machnich found herself arguing and debating both children and adults, alike. She would attend John Hopkins University and achieve her law degree from the University of Illinois College of Law.
Since graduating, Tegan Christine Machnich has practiced both civil and criminal law. Having extensive trial experience has taught her how to expertly craft an argument and visualize a case in order to win. Not only has she worked for a large private firm, but for the past eight-and-a-half years she has served in the Clark County Public Defenders office. Currently, she serves on one of the specialty trial teams exclusively handling cases that carry the potential of a life sentence.
Tegan’s greatest passion is protecting the rights of “the little guy” and ensuring that the law is applied fairly across the board. Each of her clients impact her deeply, as each is a person with a family, future, and rights that must be protected.
Recently, Machnich proudly received her third “not guilty” verdict in a row, freeing her clients – who were all facing life in prison – entirely. Just over one year ago, she won a victory in a murder case where the State asked the jury for a conviction on a charge that could have led to life in prison for her client, who was arrested at the age of sixteen. Instead, the jury agreed with Tegan and found him guilty of the lesser charge that he took responsibility for. After the hard-fought trial, the now twenty-year-old man walked free into his mother’s arms.
“During trial, I work eighty plus hours a week, barely sleep, and constantly obsess over saving my client,” she admits. “It’s not just one specific client that has moved me; it is many. But it is worth it.”
The long hours can take a toll on her family life at home, but as a married mother of two small children, she has learned how to juggle both worlds. She has a spirited son and a daughter, ages six and three, respectively, and although she occasionally runs for charity, it is understandable that her free time is most often spent enjoying her little ones.
Tegan Christine Machnich is especially excited about the upcoming election because of the many progressive and diverse candidates who are daring to run for the bench this year. A large number of candidates have been Public Defenders, and many of them are women. In the past, a large number of judges who are slated with criminal dockets had only previously practiced as District Attorneys during their careers. Even more frightening, many of the judges on the bench have never handled a criminal case before sitting in judgement of peoples’ lives.
“It’s time that changed. This is the time to change the face of the bench. It doesn’t matter how well-connected a candidate might be. What is important is their experience and well-roundedness. Have they got the experience of handling a criminal docket? Do they have experience in the civil arena? Have they been a trial lawyer that has actually tried cases and won?” Tegan continues, “The people who appear before me will know that I refuse to waste their time or make rulings based on the popular opinion or the easy way out. I will make all of my rulings based on the facts before me and the established law.”
Machinch’s quick-wittedness and contagious excitement serves her well in the courtroom. Her persuasiveness is always respectful and tactful, while being simultaneously shockingly effective. As your District Court Judge of Department 15, she will remain impartial and provide legal and articulated reasons for decisions that she makes in the cases brought before her. While holding litigants to a high standard, she assures that she will treat each person fairly who walks into her courtroom. It is time for change. It is time for Tegan Christine Machnich.