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GOP picnic for police kicks off Day 1 of Republican convention

Nevada Assemblyman Tom Roberts, Republican congressional candidate Dan Rodimer and the Trump Victory Committee hosted a barbecue in a Las Vegas park Monday to celebrate law enforcement officers and kick off the first day of the Republican National Convention.

Roberts, a 34-year law enforcement veteran who is running unopposed for re-election, told the few dozen people gathered at picnic tables in Sunset Park that the event served as a way to give thanks to law enforcement, as well as encourage people to vote for him, Rodimer and Republicans across the ballot.

In an interview, Roberts said the Republican convention will show a “stark difference” in messaging compared with the Democratic convention held last week.

“I believe voters are going to be energized with what they hear,” Roberts said.

Rodimer criticized his opponent, Rep. Susie Lee, and Democrats in general for failing to address “rioting” in the streets — a reference to ongoing Black Lives Matter protests held across the country — and entertaining the idea of defunding police.

“The people of (Nevada’s 3rd Congressional District) — and the people of Nevada — want more cops,” Rodimer told the picnickers. “They don’t want less cops. They want to make sure when they call, (police officers) come.”

Rodimer said in an interview that Democrats’ messaging around police reform has “backfired” as voters have seen buildings burned down and police officers shot during protests.

In response to the Republicans’ event, Nevada State Democratic Party spokeswoman Molly Forgey said Rodimer’s record includes several run-ins with the law.

“No one should take Dan Rodimer seriously when it comes to keeping Nevada families safe,” she said.

Forgey said state Democrats have passed laws aimed at improving safety through limiting gun violence, banning police chokeholds and protecting sexual assault survivors.

Contact Rory Appleton at rappleton@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0276. Follow @RoryDoesPhonics on Twitter.

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