Sandoval to address GOP on Monday

Gov. Brian Sandoval will use his prime-time address to the GOP convention Monday to encourage support from Hispanics across the nation.

"It's a big honor," he said of the invitation to speak on national television at 6 p.m. Monday. He said that in addition to touting Nevada, he wants to "reach out to the Hispanic community."

"It's important to put out a strong message about my background," he said in an interview Thursday.

Sandoval is Nevada's first Hispanic governor.

His speech will have to be tightly written since he only gets six to eight minutes at the podium.

"I've got a lot to say and not much time to say it," he said. "I want to make a strong impression."

He said the addition of Rep. Paul Ryan, of Wisconsin, to the ticket will continue Mitt Romney's momentum in the polls.

He said he first met Ryan just last week and described him as "a guy you'd like as your next door neighbor."

There is one issue, however, with which Sandoval disagrees with Ryan, a staunch foe of abortion.

"I'm pro-choice," Sandoval said, a stance he has made no secret of during his career.

He described as "ridiculous" the comments by Missouri Rep. Todd Akin referring to "legitimate rape" and saying rape victims' bodies can prevent a pregnancy.

Sandoval said despite the strong views of some factions of the Republican Party, he thinks there still is room for differing opinions on a variety of issues.

I think it is a big tent and I think that's something you're going to see at this convention," Sandoval said. "Diversity is strength."

He said he applauds the Tea Party wing of the party.

"I've got to respect people who feel strongly about their views and are involved in the process," Sandoval said.

He said he's looking forward to meeting other luminaries ands rising stars of the party who will be there, including Condoleezza Rice, whom he said he has only talked to by telephone.

"I got the impression she was very fond of Nevada," he said.

Sandoval will return to Nevada on Wednesday in time to take his third-grade daughter to her first softball game. He said his only disappointment is that he will miss her first day of school this year.


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