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Assembly District 23

Clark County Republican Party Treasurer Swadeep Nigam has tried and failed in two election campaigns against incumbents.

He’ll take on another incumbent in June 14’s Republican primary, challenging four-term Assemblywoman Melissa Woodbury in Assembly District 23.

The winner of the race will face Craig Jordahl in the Nov. 8 general election. Jordahl is unopposed in the Democratic primary.

For Nigam and Woodbury, the campaign is all about education.

Woodbury is on the front lines, employed as an elementary school teacher, and Nigam is an advocate who believes higher education is the key to solving a number of other issues that confront the state.

“I got into politics in the first place for my students,” Woodbury said. “I’ve taught elementary-age students for more than 20 years and I wanted to do more for them than I could do class by class.”

Woodbury, the daughter of former Clark County Commissioner Bruce Woodbury, said there needs to be a better nexus between K-12 education and higher education, and she expects that to be a key issue in the 2017 legislative session.

She said the state needs to do a better job of defining individual pathways for students. Nevada’s high dropout rate is a result of pushing students toward college rather than providing the options necessary for learning a trade, she noted.

Nigam also believes strongly in education and said it is closely tied to economic development and the job market.

He said the state’s economic development program is working, but he wants to see the growth pace accelerated — and he has the tools to do that because of his lengthy association with finances.

“I have more than 35 years of experience in the financial world,” Nigam said. “I think I can do a better job than most of the elected officials who go there and have no idea what it takes even to run a small business or even to balance their own checkbooks.”

Contact Richard N. Velotta at rvelotta@reviewjournal.com or 702-477-3893. Find @RickVelotta on Twitter.

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