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Nevada Governor's Race Has National Implications

Nevada Governor's Race Has National Implications
Adam Laxalt (Getty Images)

By Friday, 27 July 2018 12:58 PM Current | Bio | Archive

Few of the 36 races for governor this fall  have such overtones for the presidential election cycle as the one in Nevada.

With Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval constitutionally required to step down after two terms, the race for succession is increasingly viewed as critical in a “proxy state” for the 2020 election cycle.

Two years after Hillary Clinton edged Donald Trump for Nevada’s electoral votes and Democrat Catherine Cortez Masto eked out a win in a hard-fought Senate race, there are growing signs national Democrats want to make the Silver State permanently “blue.”

“There’s strong evidence of that when you look at who intends to bankroll my opponent,” State Attorney General and Republican gubernatorial nominee Adam Laxalt told Newsmax, “George Soros, Tom Steyer [multimillionaire environmentalist], and [the SuperPAC of former U.S. Attorney General] Eric Holder have all pledged $10 million to my opponent.”

Laxalt’s opponent is Clark County Commissioner Steve Sisolak, 64, considered a “progressive” Democrat. Should Sisolak emerge triumphant in November, Laxalt told us, “We’re going to be another California, with sanctuary cities, unionized state workers, and rolling back our Right-to-Work laws. And we’ll have higher taxes and more regulations.”

For his part, Sisolak has already begun to talk like his major out-of-state donors. He says he “knows climate change is real” and vows to “promote policies that address our changing climate, cut carbon pollution, and protect the resources we have.” Like Bloomberg, he has “pledged to take on the NRA and immediately enact commonsense gun safety regulations.”

Four years ago, U.S. Navy veteran of the Iraq War and first-time office-seeker Laxalt made headlines by upsetting Democrat Ross Miller (son of a popular former governor) and became the nation’s youngest state attorney general.

Now 39, Laxalt has been an aggressive attorney general, pushing back on federal government overreach and using his office to defend free speech and the sanctity of life, for which Sisolak has sharply attacked him.

He created an Office of Military Legal Assistance to provide pro-bono legal services for veterans, and a Federalism Unit, which has challenged regulations issued by the Environmental Protection Agency and other federal agencies.

The Republican gubernatorial hopeful is the grandson of Paul Laxalt, the former governor and U.S. Senator. Like his grandfather (who was one of Ronald Reagan’s closest political friends), Laxalt is a strong conservative whose personality and willingness to listen appeals to more moderate Republicans as well as the newer populist wing of the party that embraces Donald Trump as its hero.

“We’ve had a lot of cuts in government in the last few years, so my goal as governor is to do more with less,” he told us, “that means making government more efficient.”

He cited his strong support for Education Savings Accounts (ESAs), which essentially give complete choice to parents on where to educate their children. In Laxalt’s words, “whatever they want—home school, private school, whatever—they can choose.”

The conservative hopeful also wants to see his state advance technical schools to provide “better job skills for our changing economy and changing tax base.”

Laxalt is also pro-Second Amendment and strongly pro-life (although he says he would not change Nevada’s law which says “women have the right to choose”).

The differences between Laxalt and Sisolak are stark and numerous and polls almost universally show their contest to be neck-and-neck. Its outcome will almost surely have national implications, thus making it one of the most-watched in the nation.

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.


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Few of the 36 races for governor this fall have such overtones for the presidential election cycle as the one in Nevada.
nevada, governor, adam laxalt
Friday, 27 July 2018 12:58 PM
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