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Craig Mueller hits primary opponent on crime, promises to defend pot

Republican Attorney General candidate Craig Mueller says his primary opponent has been “inert” in the face of increasing crime. Mueller also pledged to take on the federal government if it came after Nevada’s recreational marijuana industry and to fight to get federally owned lands returned to the state.

Mueller claimed that crime has significantly increased since 2014. He blamed Wes Duncan, who’s also running for attorney general as a Republican and used to serve in the AG’s office.

“He was inert in the face of a problem,” said Mueller while filming Nevada Politics Today. “He’s been inert in the face of every problem I’ve ever presented him. I strongly suspect, based on his past performances, he’ll be inert in the future. The answer is we’ve got, in the short term, to get crime under control. At a minimum, we ought to go back to having our police staffed at the levels it was a few years ago.”

Asked how an attorney general employee is responsible for local police staffing decisions, Mueller said Duncan’s campaign theme has set him up for the critique.

“The theme of Mr. Duncan’s campaign is ‘A Safer Nevada,’ said Mueller. “He’s handing out flyers and telling everyone, ‘I want a safer Nevada,’ but when he was in charge did nothing and watched crime statistics go up.”

Mueller pledged to protect Nevada’s recreational marijuana industry and said, “One of the key problems in our lifetimes is this overreaching federal government.

“If the federal government actually moved to act against that industry, I would be in federal court seeking injunctive relief against the federal government and, hopefully, picking another big constitutional fight with them.”

Mueller said he would sue the federal government on behalf of Nevada to force it to transfer federally owned land back to the state.

“I want to sue the federal government to enforce the Constitution,” he said. “When a state and federal government disagree as to the roles and missions of the state versus the federal government, the initial jurisdiction of that lawsuit is in United States Supreme Court.”

When it comes to the stalled background check initiative, Question 1, Mueller said current Attorney General Adam Laxalt’s interpretation of the law was “correct legally.”

“When the state voters say you have to get a federal check, the federal government is under no obligation to do that. So when the federal government says, ‘Sorry, Nevada. We’re not interested. We don’t have the staffing.’ That’s the end of the discussion.”

On opioids, Mueller said he favored a lawsuit brought by the state, not multiple cases brought by local jurisdictions. Mueller said a unified state lawsuit would likely produce a “much larger recovery” while avoiding “duplicating a massive amount of work.”

No matter who wins the Republican nomination for attorney general, Mueller pledged to support the GOP candidate.

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