CARSON CITY — Democrat Jill Derby does not see how she can lose her rematch against Rep. Dean Heller, R-Nev., since the economy has gone down the toilet and she considers him part of the crowd that caused the problem.

“Our economy has tanked,” said Derby, 68, a former state Democratic Party chairwoman who served 18 years as an unpaid member of the Board of Regents.

“Wherever I go, I ask people if they are better off today than they were eight years ago. Everyone resoundingly says they are not. We need a new direction.”

But Heller, 48, considers it ludicrous to tag him as one of those who contributed to the nation’s economic mess.

He pointed out he has served in Congress fewer than two years, voted against both budgets proposed by President Bush during that time and voted against GOP presidential nominee John McCain by opposing the $700 billion Wall Street bailout bill.

Heller said he also has voted against $300 billion in tax increases during his term in Congress.

“I have rejected these budgets and tax increases and bailouts that have contributed to our economic problems,” said Heller, who served 12 years as Nevada’s secretary of state before being elected to Congress in 2006.

But as a member of Congress, Heller is part of the “shovel brigade that has gotten us in this deep hole,” Derby asserted during a debate in Elko. Under Bush, deficit spending has been adding more than $400 billion a year to the national debt, she said.

The Heller-Derby contest is a rematch of their 2006 race when Heller won the 2nd Congressional District seat by 5 percentage points.

A Democrat has not won the seat since it was created with the 1982 election.

The 105,000-square-mile district covers the entire state, except for the most heavily populated areas of Las Vegas. It includes Mesquite, the area around Nellis Air Force Base and other parts of Clark County.

A Review-Journal poll of voters in the district early in October found Heller with a 13 percentage point lead, while a Reno Gazette-Journal poll gave him a 7 percentage point lead.

Heller made national news last summer when he said some Republicans in Congress should lose because they have become big spenders, forgetting their principals as fiscal conservatives.

He predicts big business will come back to Congress for another bailout next year and Nevada needs someone strong enough to vote no.

“They are going to ask for a $500 billion bailout within the next six months,” Heller said. “The market has lost 15 percent to 20 percent (of stock value) since the bailout. It was the wrong thing to do.”

Heller said he could support an economic stimulus package in Congress, but will not commit to backing one before he reads the bill. If such a bill included a tax increase, Heller said he would vote no.

“I understand the frustration of the average citizen,” Heller said. “My father had an automotive shop and he said in the ’70s and ’80s there were tough times and he was never offered a bailout, not that he would have taken one.”

Like Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, Derby has mentioned during her campaign that she supports tax cuts for the middle class and small businesses.

She also would back an economic stimulus plan if it included funds to repair roads and bridges and the nation’s infrastructure.

Derby said she has hope for a victory because of the dramatic changes in party registration since their November 2006 race.

She lost by 12,575 votes to Heller. At that time, Republicans enjoyed a 48,246 registered voter advantage in the district.

Today the Republican advantage is less than 21,000 voters and, for the first time since 1978, Republicans are not the majority party in Washoe County

Heller has insisted Derby would increase taxes by $161 billion, based on his staff’s examination of her Web site and the bills she said she would support.

But Derby said she would be a “blue dog Democrat,” a fiscal conservative who would not increase spending unless there was a corresponding reduction in another section of the budget.

She maintains Heller has voted against bills Nevadans want and need: opposing a bill to expand a health care program for children; opposing equal pay for women; and opposing allowing Medicare to seek lower-cost prescription drugs.

In response, Heller said the children’s health care bill would have increased taxes by $72 billion, including $5 billion that would have gone to children of illegal immigrants.

The equal pay for women bill contained provisions sought by lawyers who would file lawsuits that could bankrupt small companies, he said. He supported legislation to let people secure lower cost drugs from Canada and other counties.

Derby challenged his view that $5 billion in health care benefits would go to children of illegal immigrants, noting the bill specified people had to be legal residents for at least five years to apply.

But a state official involved in Nevada’s Checkup program said the bill contained provisions to reduce the documentation required to qualify for benefits.

Because of that, Republicans in Congress maintained $5 billion would go to illegal immigrants. President Bush vetoed the bill.

A former neighbor of Derby’s filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission that charged Heller may have violated election laws by not paying off $363,000 in campaign debt from 2006. He owes much of the money to Mike Slanker, a political consultant.

“That is nothing out of the ordinary,” Heller said of the complaint brought by Minden resident Howard Herz, who identifies himself as an independent. “We are paying it off every month.”

A decision has not been reached by the FEC.

Heller has raised $1.4 million during the campaign, compared to Derby’s $812,000. As of mid-October, he had $405,000 in cash on hand. Derby had $245,000 in cash.

Derby expects younger people, in particular, will support her on Election Day. She said polls showing Heller with the lead are flawed in part because they did not include younger people who only have cell phones.

Secretary of state records show voters 18 to 24 are registering Democratic by a 5 to 3 margin in Reno, the largest city in the 2nd Congressional District.

“Jill Derby is very popular among students,” said Troy Melin, president of the student Democrats’ organization at the University of Nevada, Reno. “Heller is the incumbent, but I believe students will support Jill.”

In contrast, Fred Lokken, a political science professor at Truckee Meadows Community College, said Heller even gained Democratic votes when he voted against the bailout.

“You would think the change in voter registration would help her, but I think Heller will win by a wider margin” than in 2006.

Lokken said there simply has been no “buzz” for Derby.

Heidi Smith, the Washoe County Democrat chairwoman, said Heller will gain additional votes this time from people who voted for former Assemblywoman Sharron Angle, R-Reno, two years ago.

Angle and Heller had engaged in a bitter Republican primary in August 2006 that Heller won by 428 votes.

Angry Angle supporters would not vote for Heller in the general election two years ago, Smith said.

“Dean has the kind of voting record now that they can support,” she said.

Contact reporter Ed Vogel at evogel or 775-687-3901.

Nye County detectives pursue suspects
A swarm of Nye County deputies, at the request of Las Vegas police, surrounded a hotel room in Pahrump last week to take two fugitives into custody. (Nye County Sheriff's Office)
Taxpayer-funded LVCVA boss negotiating exit pay despite criminal investigation
CEO Rossi Ralenkotter is the third-highest-paid public official in the state He has a pay and benefits package valued at $863,000 annually. Ralenkotter does not have an employment contract He announced his retirement in mid June, amid a scandal over airline gift cards LVCVA bought $90,000 in Southwest Airline gift cards between 2012 and 2017. Now auditors can’t account for more than $50,000 of the cards. Ralenkotter and his family used $16,207 in gift cards on 56 trips. Brig Lawson, the senior director of business partnerships, was responsible for buying and distributing the cards. He recently resigned. Ralenkotter's retirement settlement package could cost taxpayers thousands of dollars.
Bicyclists ride empty Interstate 11 before it opens Aug. 9
Southern Nevada Bicycle Coalition sponsored a 25-mile ride on the yet-to-be-opened Interstate 11 to highlight bicycle and motorist safety. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Paul Fronczak on his search for truth
Paul Fronczak, man mistaken for stolen baby in 1964, talks about the long search for his twin sister and the real Paul. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
1 dead after shooting near Sahara and the Strip in Las Vegas
Lt. Ray Spencer briefs the news media on a shooting at Sahara Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard South that left one dead. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Family remembers deceased mother
Family members of Adriann Gallegos remember her. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
2 in custody after chase
Two people were in custody after a chase involving Nevada Highway Patrol and Nye County Sheriff"s office deputies ended in southwest Las Vegas. Las Vegas police blocked off Rainbow Boulevard north of Tropicana Avenue around 1 a.m. Wednesday. Law enforcement personnel prepared to tow a black sedan as part of their investigation. It's not certain what precipitated the chase or where and when it started. Check back for updates.
Police Officer's Vehicle Was Taken During Shooting
Video from body worn camera footage released by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Wednesday shows an officer realizing his police vehicle has been taken during the chaos of the Route 91 shooting. It was later recovered at Sunrise hospital with the keys in the ignition and nothing removed. (Madelyn Reese/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
See Kitty Hawk’s flying car cruise over Lake Las Vegas
Kitty Hawk takes their flying car for a ride in the company’s hidden test facility in Lake Las Vegas. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Watch Las Vegas police wild pursuit through busy Las Vegas streets
An intense chase near Downtown Las Vegas ends after gunfire is exchanged as the suspect flees on busy streets and ends up near an elementary school. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
Man shot strolling through park
A man was hospitalized early Tuesday morning after being shot while walking in a central Las Vegas park. Las Vegas police say the man and a woman were in Molasky Park just after midnight when the man was shot. The pair ran to a nearby supermarket where a security guard called for help. The man was hospitalized and as of 3 a.m. was in stable condition. Police have yet to identify the shooter and no suspects are in custody.
Police investigating shooting at east valley apartment complex
No one was injured late Monday night after someone fired shots at a vehicle at an east valley apartment complex. Police responded just before midnight to the Hamptons Apartments, 3070 S. Nellis Blvd. Someone fired shots at a vehicle that was leaving the complex, and struck the vehicle. Another bullet struck a nearby apartment building. The shooter or shooters remain at-large.
Suspect fires at Las Vegas police before officers shoot, end wild pursuit
An intense chase near Downtown Las Vegas ends after gunfire is exchanged as the suspect flees on busy streets and ends up near an elementary school. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
Hundreds Attend Slides, Rides and Rock and Roll in North Las Vegas
Hundreds attended the inaugural slides, rides and rock and roll event in North Las Vegas Saturday. The event featured a car show, water slide park and live music. (Madelyn Reese/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
It's All Rainbows At The Center's New Cafe
The Gay and Lesbian Center of Southern Nevada (The Center) introduced its new coffeeshop, Little Rainbow Cafe, in June. Rainbows are everywhere, even in the lattes and toast, and employees wear t-shirts with the quote "Be a rainbow in someone's cloud." Owner Ben Sabouri said the concept is "built around the idea of, you know, be kind and treat everybody the same." (Madelyn Reese/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Get a Rainbow Latte at the The Center's Little Rainbow Cafe
The Center, a community center for the LGBTQ community of Southern Nevada, has a new cafe. Little Rainbow Cafe serves up a pride-inspired signature "Rainbow Latte." (Madelyn Reese/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Pedestrian killed trying to cross Sahara
A pedestrian was killed Friday trying to cross Sahara Avenue near Maryland Parkway about 5 a.m. A sedan struck the pedestrian while the person was outside the crosswalk between Maryland Parkway and Pardee Place, according to Las Vegas police. Police also said the driver of the sedan remained at the site of the crash. The pedestrian was pronounced dead at the scene. This is the 75th fatal crash that Las Vegas police have investigated in 2018.
Man shot multiple times
Las Vegas police are investigating after a man was shot multiple times early Friday morning. The shooting was called in about 3:20 a.m. at the Harbor Island Apartments, 370 E. Harmon Ave., near Koval Lane. The man was hospitalized and is expected to survive, but police are still searching for the shooter.
Former Military Police Corps Officer Celebrates 100th Birthday
Summerlin resident Gene Stephens, who served as a military policeman in WWII and escorted then-Gen. Dwight Eisenhower and President Roosevelt during the war, turned 100 on July 13, 2018. He credits his longevity to living a normal life, exercising regularly and eating three square meals a day. (Madelyn Reese/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Motorcyclist suffers serious injuries
A motorcycle rider was seriously injured Tuesday night after a crash on Charleston Boulevard. The crash was reported just before 10 p.m. near Durango Drive, according to Las Vegas police. The motorcyclist was hospitalized with unknown injuries but is expected to survive. Las Vegas police are investigating the cause of the accident.
CCSD Superintendent Jesus Jara Has Lunch With Students
New Clark County School District superintendent Jesus Jara continued his listening tour by having lunch with students at Red Rock Elementary School as part of the district's summer lunch program. In conjunction with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, children under the age of 18 can find a free lunch at 104 different locations across the valley through the summer months. Jara highlighted the free program and the importance of eating healthy during his visit. (Madelyn Reese/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Timeline Leading Up to Scott Dozier's Execution
Scott Dozier is set to be executed by lethal injection the night of July 11 at Ely State Prison. Dozier was convicted of the April 2002 killing of 22-year-old Jeremiah Miller and was given the death penalty in Oct. 2007. In 2016 Dozier asked in a letter to District Judge Jennifer Togliatti requesting that he “be put to death.” A three-drug cocktail of midazolam, a sedative; the painkiller fentanyl; and cisatracurium, a paralytic, is expected to end his life. (Madelyn Reese/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
New Program Helps Mothers Battling Addiction
Jennifer Stanert has battled drug addiction on and off for the last 21 years. It caused her to lose custody of one of her children, Alec, after she gave birth while high. A new program at Dignity Health St. Rose Dominican Hospitals aims to connect mothers like Stanert with community resources and provide case management services while still pregnant to get connected to lactation and parenting classes, group peer support and education on neonatal abstinence syndrome. (Madelyn Reese/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Felon caught with guns in Mandalay Bay room 3 years before Las Vegas shooting
A felon was caught with guns in a Mandalay Bay hotel room three years before the October 1st mass shooting. Six weapons were found inside Kye Aaron Dunbar’s 24th floor room in November 2014. Four were semi-automatic. One was a scoped rifle pointing toward the Strip, according to court documents. Dunbar was sentenced to 40 months in federal prison for unlawful possession. The case just came to light in a lawsuit accusing Mandalay Bay of negligence in connection with the Oct. 1st shooting.
Illegal fireworks in the Las Vegas area garner complaints
Clark County received nearly 25,000 complaints over the Independence Day holiday on a new illegal fireworks site. Reports from the site led to at least 10 illegal fireworks busts across the valley overnight. As of Thursday morning, the county is still compiling the total number of citations issued.
House fire displaces 2 people
Two people were displaced after a house fire early Thursday morning. The fire, at 963 Temple Drive in east Las Vegas, was reported just after midnight, according to a battalion chief from the Clark County Fire Department. Crews from the North Las Vegas and Las Vegas fire departments also were called in to help. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
"Red White and Boom" July 4 Fireworks at the Stratosphere
Full video of the Fourth of July "Red White and Boom" fireworks show at the Stratosphere as seen from the 8th floor Elation Pool. (Madelyn Reese/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
July 4th fireworks at the Eureka Casino Resort in Mesquite
July 4th fireworks at the Eureka Casino Resort in Mesquite. (7-04-18) (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas Crowds Enjoy Fireworks at the Stratosphere
Revelers enjoyed watching fireworks displays from the Stratosphere's 8th floor Elation pool on July 4. (Madelyn Reese/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Pedestrian killed in Henderson
A pedestrian trying to cross St. Rose Parkway at Bermuda was hit by a vehicle on Tuesday night and later died. The crash was reported around 11:30 p.m. Las Vegas police responded initially, but handed over the investigation to Henderson police once it was determined the accident happened in their jurisdiction. Las Vegas police did respond to a report of a pedestrian being hit by a vehicle on the Strip. The person, who was hit by a BMW near Fashion Show mall, suffered serious but not life-threatening injuries.
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like