However, the primary vote is actually one of the most important responsibilities voters have. The concept of primary voting caught fire in the 1920’s to curb the power of “Party Bosses,” nowadays referred to as the establishment. The idea was to bring voters into the process of selecting party nominees, ensuring the purity of a politician’s ideology.
Today, it’s more important than ever that voters research the background and philosophy of the candidates. Incumbents take voters for granted and see themselves as the privileged class with voters as their servants, a corruption of their responsibilities to the voter.
So let’s not forget the primary vote is an awesome responsibility bestowed upon each of us to ensure the establishment is stopped, when they try to water down the conservative agenda. Remember it’s easy to be a moderate; it takes a leader to be a philosophical warrior.
A few caveats for the candidates, in cases where it’s mathematically impossible to win the seat because of the lopsided voter registration we won’t be making an endorsement. By the way, that’s not the candidate’s fault, it’s the fault of the party leadership who did nothing to register Republicans in those districts.
Also candidates, if you don’t garner our endorsement, it’s because you committed various egregious sins against the party philosophy and we will be pointing them out. Our goal is to insure voters are provided with best information to make their decisions.
With that said, here are Liberty Watch’s 2018 primary Republican endorsements.
This race originally started as a matchup between incumbent Dean Heller and Danny Tarkanian. The challenger would have won the primary but he got scared, wet his pants and announced he would move to another race. More on Danny later, now back to Heller.
There are 4 Republicans taking on Dean Heller on this primary cycle and anyone of them would be a better choice. Dean has betrayed the trust of voters, becoming the ultimate swamp creature. He is a “Never Trumper” and continually lied about his positions. On healthcare, Heller told us he would vote to repeal Obamacare, then when the time came to repeal, Heller was AWOL.
As President Trump himself noted in a press conference last summer, pointing at Sen. Heller who was sitting right next to him, “This was the one we were worried about. You weren’t there.”
That pretty well sums it up. Liberty Watch recommends #NEVER HELLER.
U.S. Congress District 1
No endorsement, it’s mathematically impossible for Republicans to pick up this seat. The Democrats have such a massive voter registration advantage here, it’s an embarrassment. This district is a prime example of state party leadership incompetence.
U.S. Congress District 2
Liberty Watch endorses the boundless Mark Amodei.
U.S. Congress District 3
Republicans have a legitimate chance to win this seat. Here’s the district by the numbers: Democrats have a registration advantage of 167,130 registered voters, to the Republicans 143,356. However, the Non-partisan total is 56,372 and the Independent American Party has 13,904 registered. When we do some basic math the seat becomes a toss-up. We know this through our experience and historical data.
In a general election non-partisans tend to vote 60% for Republicans and Independent American party members vote 45% for Republicans. We believe there will be a 21% general election turnout. Thus, the Democrats will mostly likely garner a vote total of 41,437 versus the Republicans gathering 42,725 votes. This is a seat the Republicans can pick up.
Let’s talk about the candidates; nine Republicans are vying for the seat, however only three are relevant for three reasons: money raised, name recognition and philosophical bona fides. Who are the three? Michelle Mortensen, Scott Hammond and Danny Tarkanian. Let’s start with Scott Hammond he’s raised money, he has name recognition, he a sitting State Senator, however, philosophically, he is more aligned with the Democrat party. He voted for the largest tax increase in Nevada State history, violating the taxpayer protection pledge he signed. This is easy, we don’t reward someone for their bad behavior. NO TO HAMMOND.
Danny Tarkanian has raised the money, has name recognition and has supported conservative principles. However, Danny has ran for various offices and has lost each and every time. This is tough for us because we like Danny. But this isn’t about Danny, it’s about winning.
Danny betrayed the movement when he chose his ego over the voter. If he would have stayed in the Senate race against Dean Heller he would have won, but his narcissism led him to violate the trust he had gained from the party faithful. Like a bully in the school yard, he believes he’s entitled to wear the crown of Congressional District 3, but Danny’s not the best candidate for the job. We like Danny, just not in this race. NO TO DANNY.
Michelle Mortensen; she’s raised money, has more name recognition then any of the candidates, Republican or Democrat, and her conservative bona fides are what Republicans dream about. We like Michelle over Danny because she has the best chance to win in November.
In the general election, the primary winner will most likely face Democrat Susie Lee, who is backed by the Washington Democratic machine (DNC) and it doesn’t hurt that she’s married to Casino Magnet Dan Lee. Lee’s war chest will be unlimited.
Mortensen, will also have unlimited resources, but has the huge advantage, of spending the last six years as a journalist at Channel 8. She fought for consumers on the 8 On Your Side Consumer Unit, helping seniors fight pharmaceutical companies and win their battles against Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. She has a massive built-in base of support amongst the most needed demographic in an election–Seniors. Also, a Mortensen vs. Lee matchup means no female #metoo card can be played. In a race this close that one issue alone would be a disaster for a male candidate.
So after much soul searching, running the numbers and comparing the positives Liberty Watch proudly endorses Michelle Mortensen.
U.S. Congress District 4
This is mostly a rural district which also includes a small part of northern Clark County. Democrats have a registration advantage of 153,290 registered voters while the Republicans have 116,918. Here again, when we add in the Non-partisans (77,014) and the Independent American Party (16,044) and put past voter trends in perspective, this open race actually looks really good for Republicans. After crunching the numbers, we come up with Republicans garnering 52,977 votes to the Democrats 47,066 votes. We know you’re skeptical, but the Democrats have four enclaves in the Northern part of the district that historically haven’t turned out to vote. Republicans have held this seat in the past and we believe there’s a strong chance we can do it again..
Six Republicans are vying for this seat in the primary; only two are relevant Dave Gibbs and Cresent Hardy. Let’s start with Crescent Hardy. He’s raised money, has name recognition, however, he’s one of the original #nevertrumpers and he decides his philosophy by putting his finger in the air to see which way the wind is blowing. That’s not what voters are looking for. NO TO HARDY or should we say something he will better understand #NEVERHARDY.
Dave Gibbs; he’s raised money, has good name recognition, he’s the former Chairman of the Clark County Republican Party and has strong conservative bona fides. He’s a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy and retired bomber pilot, Gibbs lives with his wife of 32 years, Cathy, in North Las Vegas and has called Nevada his home for the last 19 years.
Cathy and Dave have two daughters. Gibbs has the best chance to win in November; the seat is being vacated by Ruben Kihuen who was accused of sexual misconduct by a former staffer, which means the six way Democrat primary will be a seewho- is-the bluest-blood bath, leaving Gibbs with a healthy head start in November.
Liberty Watch proudly endorses DAVE GIBBS.
This is an open seat, eight Nevadans are vying for your vote. Only 4 stand out, which is good for the voters, and you will have the chance to decide who will face the Democrat in November… Here we go. S t e p h a n i e Carlisle has a background in c o m m e r c i a l b u s i n e s s finance, giving her a leg up on her opponents. She has a deep understanding for budgets and u n d e r s t a n d s t h a t t ransparency and conducting r e g u l a r d e p a r t m e n t audits will hold department leaders responsible for any improprieties. Mrs. Carlisle supports a state lottery, Voter ID and is committed to repealing the stifling 2015 Commerce Tax. She would be a great pick for voters.
Jared Fisher is a Nevada success story. He graduated from UNLV, and from a student marketing project, he and his now wife Heather, created a tour company and three bike shops that have been successful for the last 25 years. Jared credits his mother for his entrepreneurial spirit. His stances on issues are boilerplate for the most part with a few standouts: Renewable Energy, Fisher has implemented renewable energy at both his business and home. He’s completed six solar projects and three wind projects. Fisher’s ideas for roadway infrastructure seem well thought out and would keep Nevada competitive for decades to come. He would be a great pick for the voters.
Adam Laxalt. A smart and talented politician, who eight months ago would have had our endorsement, but something happened on the way to the coronation. Adam aligned himself with Mike Roberson; the guy who is so bad, that Republicans nicknamed him “Tax Hike Mike.” He gave us the new Commerce Tax and supports amnesty for illegal immigrants. He was a primary sponsor of SB303, which granted undocumented immigrants driver’s licenses. During legislative testimony it was estimated 100,000 undocumented immigrants would benefit from the law. Conservatives were concerned that those 100,000 undocumented immigrants would register to vote with their newly legitimized drivers licenses and there is evidence that the concern is becoming a reality.
The other issue is Laxalt’s deputy, Wes Duncan, who, while an employee of the State Attorney General’s office solicited contributions of $190,000.00 dollars from the people he regulated, which is in violation of Nevada Revised Statute 197.170 A public officer or employee who: 2. Requests money, property or anything of value which is not authorized by law, from any person regulated by the public officer or employee, and in a manner which would cause a reasonable person to be intimidated into complying with the request to avoid the risk of adverse action by the public officer or employee.
Tax hikes and corruption don’t sit well with conservatives. As one Elko Republican told us, “I like Adam, but I can’t support him as long as he’s pushing that Roberson character.” A Carson City Republican told us “If you sleep with dogs, you’re going to get fleas and Roberson is the worst kind of flea.”
Adam continually professes he’s a conservative and we really hope he is, however actions are stronger then words and thus far Adam’s actions aren’t building any confidence among conservatives. It’s very frustrating because Laxalt is Paul Laxalt’s grandson. The elder Laxalt was governor of Nevada from 1967 to 1971 and then was elected to the United States Senate in 1974 and served until 1987. Paul is a Nevada hero and conservatives were hoping that Adam could follow in his grandfather’s shoes. However, until Adam turns away from this unholy alliance with “Tax Hike Mike Roberson,” we can’t support him, which is disappointing because Adam stands with conservatives on gun rights, land use and water, education and jobs. Sadly, his actions and alliances are in question.
There is good news, when politicians say one thing and do another we the voters get to have a say, this is the reason we have primaries. So let us recommend that you vote your conscious and beliefs in this primary.
Dan Schwartz is a nice fellow. He’s the elected State Treasurer and has done a capable job. Dan is not, however, a conservative. He touts himself as an independent voice and an outsider. From what we can see he’s the most inside outsider ever elected to office in the State of Nevada. He has all the boilerplate beliefs conservatives like to see, but if you talk to him, one-on-one, or listen to him in his speeches, it becomes clear Dan doesn’t understand the conservative movement. With the Democrats having control of both the Assembly and Senate, Republicans don’t need to elect someone who will surrender to the democrats at every turn.
This became an open seat, when the sitting Lt. Governor Mark Hutchinson realized he couldn’t be re-elected. Five Nevadans are vying for your vote in this race. There’s a lounge singer and an Uber driver, but two candidates stand out for very different reasons.
First, is Michael Roberson, the aforementioned “Tax Hike Mike,” considered the antiChrist to the conservative movement. He is a lawyer by trade and has a reputation of pushing very liberal legislation. He’s the definition of a wolf in sheep’s clothing and the perfect example of a swamp creature. He’s “championing himself as a good conservative.” He even signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge and then he promptly violated his pledge to the voters by sponsored Senate Bill 483 the Commerce Tax and bullied it thru the legislature.
The commerce tax was once called the “Gross Receipts Tax, and was soundly defeated by the voters at the polls in the November election of 2014. Then a funny happened on the way to the 2015 Legislative Session, “Tax Hike Mike” along with his lobbyist cronies resurrected the gross receipts tax under another name. Roberson dressed it up, threw on some lipstick, and the commerce tax was born, in January 2015 until it was signed into law, Roberson, and Roberson alone, bullied, manipulated and misrepresented what the commerce tax was. The result was the largest tax increase on voters in Nevada’s history, at 1.4 billion dollars! It is now referred to as the Roberson Gross receipts tax.
Upon passage a very liberal democrat stated the following from the floor of the legislature. “For ten years I’ve tried to get a gross receipts tax passed, who knew it would take the Republicans lead by Michael Roberson to make my dream come true! Welcome to the Democrat party Mike.”
That should say it all…but unfortunately there’s much more. Roberson supported amnesty for illegal immigrants, Roberson was a primary sponsor of Senate Bill 303 which granted driver’s licenses to undocumented immigrants. It’s estimated that 100,000 undocumented immigrants will be eligible to apply for the State Drivers license, which has Nevada voters worried that these 100,000 undocumented immigrants will register to vote with their new found legitimized drivers licenses.
Roberson also voted for Common Core standards in Nevada Schools and he’s a #NEVERTRUMPER. This guy that wants you to believe he’s a conservative while he supports the Democrats a majority of the time. He collects a majority of his campaign funds from liberal trial attorneys. He’s the worst kind of cancer on the Republican brand and it’s time to send him a powerful message.
Liberty Watch recommends NO TO ROBERSON.
Brent Jones is a businessman and owner of Real Water, a national bottled water company. He’s also a former Nevada State Assemblyman. Jones was behind defeating the commerce tax and came close to defeating the effort. Unfortunately for Republican voters Roberson’s leadership position in the State Senate allowed him to manipulate the process until he could bully malleable Republican legislators to his will.
Jones was the outspoken Republican in the Assembly against the Roberson Commerce Tax, He was fearless in his opposition to the tax and paid a high political price for standing up to Roberson and the Democrats. Roberson, along with Democrat donors, poured tens of thousands of dollars against Brent Jones in his reelection campaign. One thing is for certain, Brent Jones is a Republican Warrior who won’t give up. As for qualifications, Jones far surpasses Roberson, while Jones has spent his career signing the front of paychecks, Roberson, has spent his career endorsing the backs of paychecks.
The job of Lt. Governor is twofold: first, to attract businesses to relocate to the Silver State, which Jones is much better suited for, as a successful businessman he has an in-depth knowledge of the challenges facing businesses that would be considering relocation to our State. The second part of the job is being the President of the Senate. As a former assemblyman he is uniquely qualified to manage the business of the upper-house. For voters this is an easy decision.
Liberty Watch strongly recommends you support Brent Jones.
Two Republicans are vying to become our next Attorney General.
West Duncan’s run for Attorney General has been mired in controversy and questions. “Las Vegas Review Journal reported that while a state employee, Duncan raised $190,000.00 in political contributions.”
Duncan as a state employee asked for this $190,000.00 dollars from people “he regulated” again, he regulated them, which is in violation of Nevada Revised Statute 197.170 which states, a public officer or employee who: 2. Requests money, property or anything of value which is not authorized by law, from any person regulated by the public officer or employee, and in a manner which would cause a reasonable person to be intimidated into complying with the request to avoid the risk of adverse action by the public officer or employee.
But when pressed on the issue, Duncan was quick to say that there was no conflict because “he did it in his off time” Ok, one more time for the people in the cheap seats…HE REGULATED THEM! The outcome would have been the same whether on duty or off, it’s inappropriate for a state employee to ask anyone they regulate for monies. So either Mr. Duncan is naïve in his understanding of the law because of his inexperience as an attorney, or he’s just outright corrupt! At a minimum he should return the money. For voters this is an easy decision. NO TO DUNCAN.
Craig Mueller is a life long Nevadan, he was recommended to attend the United States Naval Academy by United States Senator Paul Laxalt. After graduation Craig was commissioned and served on active duty as a Missile and Fire Control officer in the Persian Gulf. He was promoted to Deputy Project Manager at the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command, where he gained the experience to manage large organizations. He was directly responsible for managing 140 sailors and multi- million dollar budgets.
Upon returning home to Nevada Mr. Mueller served as deputy district attorney. He also founded the DUI task force. Mueller has a wealth of experience and a proven track record with his 25 years in the courtroom. He’s personally overseen 150 jury trials and has argued and won a unanimous decision in front of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco. He’s the only candidate that has a plan to curtail the distribution of opioids in Nevada. For Attorney General it’s clear we need someone with Mr. Mueller’s experience.
Liberty Watch proudly endorses Craig Mueller.
Two Republicans are vying to be our next State Treasure and for Liberty Watch readers this is an easy decision. Newcomer Derek Uehara vs. Republican Super Hero Bob Beers.
Uehara lacks the knowledge or experience to be Treasurer, and from speeches he has given on the campaign trail, it appears he has very little knowledge of what it means to be a Republican. His position on Education Savings Accounts is discombobulated and schizophrenic at best. NO ON UEHARA.
Bob Beers is a proven commodity for Republicans, a Certified Public Accountant, Beers has served as State Republican Party Treasurer, and also in various leadership roles as, State Assemblyman, State Senator and Las Vegas City Councilman. Beers personifies conservatism, Beers’ knowledge of finance and his experience as a legislator will service the people of Nevada well. Our tax dollars will be in safe hands with Beers at the helm of the Treasurer’s office. Liberty Watch endorses BOB BEERS.
Republicans face the possibility of the Democrats gaining a veto proof majority in the Senate. Republicans in the Senate or in disarray with no solid leadership to speak of. In fact “Tax Hike Mike” Roberson departing advice to the newcomers was “don’t sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.” This advice, along with Roberson’s asinine strategy of placation to the Left’s constant demands to Tax and spend, will be the demise of Senate Republicans. Here are the races important to a Majority in the Senate.
District 8 has three Republicans vying to represent the voters. This is an open seat vacated by Patricia Farley and most likely will be the cause of the veto proof majority in the senate. If Republicans had any kind of leadership this would have been a one-person race waiting to face the Democratic challenger in November. Instead, Republicans are faced with choosing between three lackluster candidates who have all refused to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.
Valerie Weber, refused to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.
Elizabeth Helgelien, Refused to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.
Dan Rodimer, Refused to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.
There is a light side to this hypocrisy; voters will have the final say in who represents them.
District 20 has two Republicans vying to represent the voters. This is an open seat vacated by “Tax Hike Mike” Roberson. The seat has less then a 1% advantage for Republicans making it a target for the Democrats. Again, Republicans are faced with choosing between two lackluster candidates who have refused to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.
Byron Brooks, refused to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.
Keith Pickard, refused to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.
There’s no good news to report here. Before one vote is cast in the primary this year the Republicans are in the minority. In fact, it’s so bad it looks like the Democrats will have a veto-proof majority. How did this happen? Incompetence at the state party leadership level is solely responsible for this situation. The party’s primary responsibility is voter registration and they did nothing! They are good a taking credit for Motor-Voter increases (that’s when a voter moves to the state and upon getting their driver’s license they register to vote) but the leaders in the party have done nothing when it comes to a comprehensive voter program, nothing! And of course those same leaders will whine about how the districts are gerrymandered without telling you that they should have led the effort to redistrict all the districts statewide in 2015 when the Republicans had the majority in the Assembly, State Senate and the Governor’s mansion. Again, they did nothing! We have to play the cards we are dealt. But, there is something you can do…and that’s vote for the best Republican in each of these races. If we are going to be in the minority, we might as well pick warriors to represent our interest. Here are our picks.
Assembly District 36
James Oscarson voted for the largest tax increase in Nevada history, he’s a #nevertrumper and during the 2015 session he voted with the Democrats on such a regular basis. The Nye County Republican excommunicated him from the Republican Central Committee. Oscarsons’ Political Action Committee has been mired in controversy regarding financial mismanagement. NO ON OSCARSON
Dennis Hof, is a businessman who owns everything from truck stops to adult entertainment venues. He’s a cross between PT Barnum and Teddy Roosevelt– flamboyant, quick witted and honest. He’d be a breath of fresh air to the Nevada Assembly. Liberty Watch endorses Dennis Hof
Assembly District 33
District 33 voters have two good choices in the Republican primary. To be a Republican in Elko, you must walk the walk. Merely talking the talk won’t get you elected. We wish we could ship Chris Johnson to another district. He’s a good man and Republican, However, Johnson is up against John Ellison, Republican of the rock-ribbed variety. District 33 is no-man’s land for Democrats. The primary winner has a seat in Carson City. Liberty Watch endorses John Ellison for that seat.
Assembly District 32
Alexis Hansen, is wife to Ira Hansen running for State Senate. This is a very simple decision for voters. No good has ever come from family dynasties running government. That’s the primary reason we kicked the King of England out of America. NO ON HANSEN
Tom Fransway is a former County Commissioner and a respected expert on public land issues, and warrior against the federal government on land issues. He would be a great addition to the State Assembly. Liberty Watch endorses Tom Fransway
John Hambrick is termed out and that’s good news for voters, he was a disaster for Republicans while in leadership, while in the majority Hambrick proved to be a feckless leader and he developed a reputation of being untrustworthy, according to his colleagues. As one put it “John lost me forever when he lied about his support of the commerce tax.” Hambrick is so bad his assembly colleagues have taken the extraordinary step to endorse his primary opponent.
NO ON HAMBRICK.
Jim Small is retired and is running on a platform repealing the Commerce Tax that is crippling small and medium businesses throughout the state. He supports school choice and education savings accounts and he wants to reform the public employee pension system. Liberty Watch endorses Jim Small.
Assembly District 4
Richard McArthur, this an easy decision for voters, MacArthur has been a consistent conservative warrior, He stood up to Roberson and Hambrick and was the vocal opposition to enacting the job killing commerce tax and opposed giving driver’s licenses to illegal aliens. Richard is a former U.S. Air Force pilot and a retired FBI agent. His experience included working cases on counterintelligence, bombings and terrorism. He has been married to his wife Trish for 45 years; they have two daughters and five grandchildren.
Liberty Watch proudly endorses RICHARD McARTHUR.
Assembly District 5
Mack Miller is the best suited to represent Republicans; a conservative that supports parent’s choice in their children’s education and to fully fund Education Savings Accounts (ESA’s). Miller will support all efforts to repeal the Roberson Commerce Tax and he has signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.
Liberty Watch endorses MACK MILLER.
Assembly District 13
Three Republicans are vying for this seat and with a 7.97% Republican voter advantage this is a safe seat for Republicans. Two of the three stand out.
Tom Roberts is U.S. Air Force Veteran and the retired Assistant Sheriff for the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. He supports choice in education, believes we need to diversify our economy and will be a advocate for stronger standards for Government accountability. Always a red flag for conservatives, Mr. Roberts has not signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.
Steve Sanson, is a U.S. Marine Veteran and the President of Veterans in Politics. He supports the repeal of the Roberson Commerce Tax, supports Education Savings Accounts and will be a vocal advocate on Veterans issues. Mr. Sanson has signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.
Liberty Watch endorses STEVE SANSON
Assembly District 22
Two Republicans are vying for this seat, both have refused to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, both are considered establishment candidates.
Richard Bunce is a perennial candidate. He started his career as a Ron Paul disciple, but quickly became a mushy middle moderate standing for nothing. Supposedly he penned an agreement with “Tax Hike Mike” Roberson for his support. Mr. Bunce touts himself as a software engineer. If his website is any indication of his abilities he should sue the college he attended for malpractice. He has nothing on issues so we don’t know where he stands, and his refusal to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge make it clear he’s no friend of the Voter. The best Republicans can hope for is that his opponent has an epiphany to become a Republican Warrior.
Melissa Hardy is a fourth generation Nevadan and graduated from UNLV with a BA in Hotel Administration. She and her husband are small business entrepreneurs. They own a Port of Subs franchise in Henderson. We have no idea why Mrs. Hardy hasn’t signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, but in looking at her qualifications it’s clear she is much better suited to represent the voters of her district. Her life experiences far outweigh those of her opponent. Unfortunately we can’t endorse Mrs. Hardy because of her failure to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. Voters will have to choose. LW