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Adam Laxalt visits Elko, Republican constituents

ELKO – Adam Laxalt visited Elko Saturday on his campaign kick-off tour as a candidate for the U.S. Senate.

Laxalt met with local Republicans at the Coffee Mug to wrap up the first day of his campaign tour in Northern Nevada. He spoke about his reasons for returning to the campaign trail in a bid to unseat incumbent Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto, D-Nev.

“As I’m traveling the state, I haven’t seen this kind of animation and energy and concern for where we’re headed in a long, long time,” he said. “People know it’s now or never. If we don’t step up now, there will be no state. There will be country to save.”

Speaking to about 30 people gathered in the restaurant, Laxalt, who served as Nevada Attorney General from 2015 to 2019 and was defeated in the 2018 governor’s race by Steve Sisolak, recalled the “Blue Wave” that saw Democrats take several state and federal offices.

Adam Laxalt and Lynn Scott

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Adam Laxalt talks with Spring Creek resident and veteran Lynn Scott at the Coffee Mug on Oct. 2 during Laxalt's stop in Elko on the first day of his campaign tour of Nevada. 

“We faced the Democrats. They were super, super motivated and went after Republicans in 2018,” he said. “Low turnout. People in this room knew how important the governor’s race was in 2018. We were missing huge chunks of our voters in 2018. We can’t let that happen again in 2022.”

He urged the audience to “stand up [so] we can make a difference” through electing representatives to office, noting the U.S. Senate was currently split 50/50 among Democrats and Republicans.

“It doesn’t take a majority to save the country. It takes a strong, vocal minority,” Laxalt said, pointing to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who Laxalt knew from serving in the Navy.

“He was single-handedly standing against the media, Fauci, all the bureaucrats, everything and doing what was right for his state,” he explained. “That gave courage to other Republican governors [who said] ‘If Ron DeSantis can do it, maybe it’s safe for me to stick behind what’s right.’”

Republican candidate for U.S. Senate and former Nevada Attorney General Adam Laxalt stopped in Elko on a campaign tour of Northern Nevada on Oct. 2, 2021. In an interview with the Elko Daily Free Press, he talked about his local campaign, priorities if the GOP takes control of the Senate in 2022, and his thoughts on Nevada's election laws.

“That shows you if we get conservatives in places like the U.S. Senate and the House that are willing to show us a different path,” Laxalt continued, “we can transform these institutions and lead this party in a different direction. That’s what I’ll do if you send me to the United States Senate.”

Locally, Laxalt said his goal was to build “an operation that will motivate people and turn people out,” pointing to lower Republican voter turnout in the 2018 election.

He said he noticed “a Red Wave-type environment” taking place.

“We think one of the most important things in 2022 is to make sure we get conservatives fired up, and we make sure we get all of our people to turn out,” Laxalt added.

If Republicans gain control of the Senate in the upcoming election, Laxalt said, “the Liberal agenda stops.”

“Right now, we face a catastrophic move to the Left as a country. People are very, very concerned that every value they believe in, whether it’s our Constitutional system, whether it’s the importance of the rule of law, whether it’s the importance of supporting our law enforcement” [is] under assault right now, he added.

He was also critical of Cortez Masto’s voting to appoint Montana environmentalist Tracy Stone-Manning as Bureau of Land Management director.

“My opponent Masto just voted to approve an eco-terrorist to run the BLM. If I’m the United States Senator and Republicans have the majority, that person would not have been voted in to be the BLM director,” Laxalt stated.

For voters concerned about the “$3.5 trillion and this new Mining Royalty Tax,” Laxalt said if he was in the Senate and the Republicans get control of the Senate, he promised, “there is no way on earth that is going through.”

He also disagreed with changes in Nevada law that switched to mail-in ballots for the 2020 election, saying “the Democrats three months before the election went into a special session, and they radically changed our voting system.”

“In fact, ballot harvesting was a felony before [the Legislature] went and changed these rules. They did this with no Republican support. They made people have less trust in our system, and we simply weren’t ready for it,” he added.

Laxalt’s stop in Elko was the first day of a 10-day statewide tour to build support for his campaign. He faces Army veteran Sam Brown, healthcare executive William Hockstedler, and Sharelle Mendenhall, a pageant winner and talent agency owner, for the Republican ticket.

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Courts, K-12 schools & Spring Creek reporter

Staff writer for the Elko Daily Free Press

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