St Lucia Starbucks/KUNR Public Radio
RENO, Nevada – Republican Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo will serve as Nevada’s next governor, pushing out a Democratic governor. Steve Sisolak, according to the AP match call.
Sisolak is (so far) the only sitting governor to lose re-election in 2022. The key issues in the campaign are crime, abortion and the economy. In 2018, he was elected the state’s first Democratic governor in more than two decades.
Former President Donald Trump, who backed Lombardo, said he disagreed with Trump’s view that the 2020 election was fraudulent.
Lombardo, a military veteran, began serving as an officer with the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department in 1988 and was elected sheriff in 2014. Lombardo became a national name in the 2017 Las Vegas mass shooting.
He supports school choice vouchers, which would allow parents to spend state funds on private school education. Opponents argue that it would drain public school resources. Nevada’s student achievement ranks low nationally.
Democrats criticized Lombardo for changing his position on several issues. He had previously said he supported a 13-week abortion ban, but later said the decision should be up to Nevada voters. Abortion is guaranteed for up to 24 weeks under state law.
Lombardo has rallied with Trump twice but disagrees with widespread voter fraud in 2020. Lombardo also imposed a COVID-19 vaccine requirement for new subway police employees, but later backed off.
Economically, Nevada has been hit hard by the pandemic, but casinos are now seeing record revenue. The state still has one of the highest unemployment rates. Lombardo has pledged not to raise taxes and wants to see Nevada’s economy diversify away from tourism and through manufacturing jobs.
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