Republicans wrangle over who should challenge Horsford

At a Hispanic forum Wednesday, the two Republicans vying for the right to challenge U.S Rep. Steven Horsford, D-Nev., in November came out against a Senate immigration reform bill, same-sex marriage and extending unemployment insurance, but differed on whether Nevada should retain early voting.

Both Assemblyman Cresent Hardy, R-Mesquite, and civil rights advocate Niger Innis said they oppose a Senate bill on comprehensive immigration reform. Yet each also said he supports providing undocumented immigrants the chance to legally live here while offering a path to U.S. citizenship for certain people — the young brought to the United States by their parents or those who serve honorably in the military.

“I don’t think it went far enough,” Hardy said of the Senate bill, adding he wants to secure the border first. “I do support a pathway” to legalization for most adult illegal immigrants and citizenship for their children. “They should have that opportunity to obtain citizenship.”

Innis said any undocumented immigrant who serves in the military “sacrificing their lives and their limbs deserve to be a citizen tomorrow.”

Innis has put together a comprehensive immigration reform plan, which he developed when he worked for He consulted with numerous GOP leaders, from U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., to former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, he said. The plan involves allowing most of the 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States to become legal and offers citizenship to limited groups of people.

“I believe in comprehensive immigration reform,” Innis said. “Legalization is the biggest part of it.”

Hardy and Innis made their remarks at a breakfast put on by Hispanics in Politics. The forum was not a debate so each candidate was allowed to make opening remarks before taking questions from the audience of more than 70 people at the Dona Maria Tamales Restaurant in downtown Las Vegas.

“We do ask that we keep things as civil as we can,” Fernando Romero, president of Hispanics in Politics, said before the candidates separately took the podium. “Please do not make accusations.”

As a result, neither candidate criticized the other, making for a tame affair.

Both candidates, however, did attack Horsford, the freshman incumbent, using the same accusation: that he’s a puppet of Democratic President Barack Obama, U.S. Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.

“We’re teetering on the edge of fiscal ruin,” Hardy said after accusing Horsford of voting with Pelosi and Reid and following Obama.

“Cresent’s right,” Innis said. “He’s part of the Obama-Reid-Pelosi Democratic regime.”

National Democrats, who are closely watching the congressional race, slammed Innis and Hardy for opposing the bipartisan Senate immigration bill “and the billions in additional border security resources it provides,”

“Washington Republicans are opposed to moving forward with reasonable solutions to reform our immigration system, and Niger Innis and Cresent Hardy would only make things worse,” said Tyrone Gayle of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “Their joint appearance this morning begs the question: will they stand up to the Tea Party and support the Senate’s bipartisan solution that helps grow the economy, creates jobs, and provides a pathway to citizenship? Or will they continue to provide nothing but empty rhetoric and misguided solutions?”

On another topic, neither Innis nor Hardy said they supported gay marriage. Instead, they both said they believe marriage is between a man and a woman.

Innis said government should stay out of private lives, but he said homosexual couples should be satisfied with civil unions.

“I do believe that civil unions should have all the same rights as a marriage,” said Innis, who grew up in Harlem where he said the “breakdown of the family” caused problems such as high crime and drug use.

Hardy said he voted against same sex marriage for religious reasons. He’s a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

“I do believe children should be brought up with a father and a mother,” Hardy said, adding he “loves the individual” but disagrees with homosexuality.

Both Innis and Hardy also said they don’t support extending unemployment benefits or raising the minimum wage, although Innis said he could back indexing the lowest wage to inflation so it’s flexible.

Hardy, who worked in construction for a couple of decades, said he had laid off employees who refused to return to work because it would only last two or three months and they’d rather stay on unemployment.

“That’s sad that people want to stay on unemployment,” Hardy said.

Innis said extending unemployment benefits won’t help the economy.

“The ultimate solution to someone who is unemployed is not more unemployment, but a job,” Innis said.

In one area of disagreement, Hardy said he opposes early voting in Nevada and once sponsored a bill to get rid of it. He said he didn’t like the fact that unions bus voters to the polls to “force people to vote when they don’t have to.” That often benefits Democrats instead of Republicans.

Innis said he doesn’t like early voting, but would not reverse the law since many senior citizens and busy families rely on the flexibility to cast their ballots before Election Day.

“I’m not going to reverse it,” Innis said.

Hardy was asked what he meant when he once said the nation’s safety net should be reserved “for those who need it most.”

Hardy said he didn’t want to see people collect welfare when they are no longer in need.

“If somebody pulls up in a welfare district in a big fancy Escalade, do you think they need welfare at that time?” Hardy asked. “I believe what the founding fathers said: ‘We’re entitled to equal rights, not equal things.’”

Hardy said he was the best person to represent Congressional District 4 because he’s a fifth generation Nevadan who knows the state. The district stretches across urban North Las Vegas in Clark County and all or part of six rural counties.

“I believe I’m the candidate who can win this race,” said Hardy, who has been endorsed by GOP Gov. Brian Sandoval and other top Republicans.

Innis argued he wouldn’t be beholden to any party or person if elected. He joked he was a seventh generation Nevadan, then said he came to Nevada in 2007 to help the needy on energy issues. He stayed and opened a business that teaches immigrants English and the Constitution.

“I’m going to be an independent choice for my constituents,” Innis said. “I’m obviously not the choice of the Republican establishment.”

Contact reporter Laura Myers at or 702-387-2919. Follow her on Twitter @lmyerslvrj.

Multi-agency DUI Strike Team focused solely on arresting impaired drivers
The newly formed DUI Strike Team made up of Las Vegas police officers and Nevada Highway Patrol Troopers have hit the streets looking for impaired drivers. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Christmas Tree Inspection
Nevada Division of Forestry employees search for illegally harvested Christmas trees in local lots during the holidays. (Michael Scott Davidson/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
One dead in a suspected DUI crash in east Las Vegas
The crash was reported just before 4:10 a.m. at Washington and Eastern avenues.
Vegas Homeless Remembered
Las Vegas vigil remembers 179 homeless people who died over the past year in Clark County. (David Guzman/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
A look inside Tesla’s Nevada Gigafactory
Tesla's Gigafactory east of Reno produces the batteries that fuel the company's electric cars. Production has created more than 7,000 jobs, and the campus that includes one of the largest buildings in the world is expected to triple in size by the time it is completed. Tesla Vice President Chris Lister leads a tour of the facility. (Bill Dentzer/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Garnet Interchange Ribbon Cutting
The Nevada Department of Transportation celebrated the completion of the $63 million I-15-US 93 Garnet Interchange project. The project includes a modified diverging diamond interchange and a 5-mile widening of US 93.
State Foresters Hunt for Record Trees
Urban foresters from the Nevada Division of Forestry hunt for record setting trees.
Rick Davidson directs NFR satellite feed
Rick Davidson directs the Wrangler NFR's live satellite feed from a production trailer outside the Thomas & Mack Center. (Patrick Everson)
Scott Boras, Bryce Harper's agent, speaks to media at baseball's winter meetings
Baseball agent Scott Boras updates media on the contract negotiations of his client Bryce Harper during baseball's winter meetings at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Dec. 12, 2018. (Ron Kantowski/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Achievement School District
The achievement district faced strong opposition from traditional schools back in its beginnings in 2016. But with schools like Nevada Rise and Nevada Prep, it's slowly and steadily growing. Amelia Pak-Harvey/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Fresno State QB on record-breaking receiver
Fresno State quarterback Marcus McMaryion talks record-setting receiver KeeSean Johnson. Video by Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal
The annual 'Shop with a Cop' event at Target
This year’s "Shop with a Cop" event gave about 40 children the chance to shop at Target alongside a North Las Vegas Police officers. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @Bizutesfaye
Melvin Dummar dead at 74
Melvin Dummar has died at 74. Dummar was famous for claiming to have saved Howard Hughes in a Nevada desert in 1967. Dummar claimed to have been left $156 million in Hughes’ will. The will mysteriously appeared after Hughes’ death in 1976. It was dismissed as a fake two years later. Dummar never saw a dime of the billionaire's fortune. Dummar died Saturday in Nye County.
Officer-involved shooting in Nye County
The Nye County Sheriff's Office gives information about a shooting in Pahrump on Thursday night after a man began firing shots outside of his home. (Nye County Sheriff's Office)
Law Enforcement Active Shooter Training Exercise
Multiple Las Vegas Valley law enforcement agencies held an active shooter drill at the Department of Public Safety’s Parole and Probation office on December 6, 2018. Officials set up the training exercise to include multiple active shooters, a barricaded suspect and multiple casualties. (Katelyn Newberg/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Public memorial service for Jerry Herbst
Archiving effort hits milestone at Clark County Museum
The Clark County Museum catalogs the final item from the bulk of Route 91 Harvest festival artifacts. (John Przybys/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Pearl Harbor survivor Edward Hall talks about his memories of Dec. 7, 1941
U.S. Army Corps Edward Hall, a 95-year-old survivor of Pearl Harbor talks about his memories of that horrific day. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Final Route 91 Harvest festival remembrance objects catalogued at Clark County Museum
The last of the more than 17,000 items left at the makeshift memorial near the Las Vegas sign after the Oct. 1 shootings have been catalogued at the Clark County Museum in Las Vegas. The final item was a black-and-white bumper sticker bearing "#VEGASSTRONG. An additional 200 items currently on display at the museum will be catalogued when the exhibit comes down. (K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Dozier execution timeline
Scott Dozier was set to be executed July 11, 2018, at the Ely State Prison. Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez delayed the execution.
Grand Jury Indicts Constable for theft
A Clark County grand jury indicted Henderson Constable Earl Mitchell. A Las Vegas Review-Journal investigation prompted the criminal probe. The newspaper found Mitchell wrote himself thousands in checks, took out cash at ATMs and traveled on county funds. He faces four felony counts of theft and a county of public misconduct. Mitchell and his attorney could not be reached for comment.
93-year-old WWII veteran arrested during visit to VA hospital
Dr. S. Jay Hazan, 93, a World War II veteran, talks about his arrest during his visit to VA hospital on Friday, Nov. 30. (Erik Verduzco Las Vegas Review-Journal @Erik_Verduzco_
Pearl Harbor survivor struggles in her senior years
Winifred Kamen, 77, survived the attack on Pearl Harbor as an infant, works a 100 percent commission telemarketing job to make ends meet. (K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas Metropolitan Briefing 18th street gang
Las Vegas Metropolitan briefs the media on the recent arrests made regarding the 18th street gang.
Man shot in Las Vegas traffic stop had knife, police say
Police said the man fatally shot by an officer during a traffic stop in downtown Las Vegas had a “homemade knife.” Demontry Floytra Boyd, 43, died Saturday at University Medical Center from multiple gunshot wounds after officer Paul Bruning, 48, shot him during a traffic stop. Bruning pulled Boyd over on suspicion of driving recklessly at 7:41 a.m. near Sunrise Avenue and 18th Street.
Catahoula dogs rescued from home in Moapa Valley
Catahoula dogs were brought to The Animal Foundation after being rescued from home in Moapa Valley.
Intuitive Forager Kerry Clasby talks about losses in California wildfire
Intuitive Forager Kerry Clasby talks about losses she suffered in California's Woolsey Fire in Malibu in November. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Benefit dinner for Kerry Clasby, the Intuitive Forager
Sonia El-Nawal of Rooster Boy Cafe in Las Vegas talks about having a benefit for Kerry Clasby, known as the Intuitive Forager, who suffered losses on her farm in California’s Woolsey Fire in Malibu. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Former President George H.W. Bush dies at 94
Former President George H.W. Bush has died at the age of 94. He died Friday night in Houston, about eight months after the death of his wife, Barbara.
News Headlines
Local Spotlight
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like