Guy W. Farmer: Some thoughts as primary election draws near | NevadaAppeal.com

Guy W. Farmer: Some thoughts as primary election draws near

Guy W. Farmer

If you don’t vote in Nevada’s June 8 primary election you’ll have only yourself to blame if your favorite candidates don’t make it into the Nov. 2 general election, and people like me will make very important political decisions for you. Thank you very much.

If past trends hold true, we’ll have a statewide primary voter turnout of around 20 percent. And since registered voters represent about half of those eligible to register, the 10 percent of us who do vote in the primary will make tax and policy decisions for the 90 percent who stay home. Do the math.

By the way, early voting started Saturday so you can do yourself a favor by voting early and avoiding longer lines on June 8. So go down to the courthouse this week; you’ll be glad you did. By the time election day rolls around half the votes will already be stored in Carson’s electronic voting machines.

With hotly contested races for governor and the U.S. Senate, there are several good reasons to vote in the primary, especially if you’re a registered Republican, which I’m not. Incumbent GOP Gov. Jim Gibbons – a national embarrassment – trails former Nevada Attorney General and federal Judge Brian Sandoval by nearly 20 points in the polls while Sue Lowden maintains a narrow lead over Danny Tarkanian and Sharron Angle for the right to challenge Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, the state’s leading Democrat, in November. A few votes could make a difference in the GOP gubernatorial primary.

If I were a Republican I’d be voting for Sandoval and Lowden, but that doesn’t mean I’ll support them in November. As for Gov. Gibbons, I agree with fellow political columnist Jon Ralston, who wrote that “our long state nightmare” will end when Sandoval defeats Gibbons in the primary.

On the local scene there are several worthy candidates running for two open seats on the Board of Supervisors. I’m supporting those who promise to go slow on the $80 million Nugget Redevelopment Project, which we simply can’t afford. That means I’ll be taking a close look at Day Williams, John McKenna, Rob Joiner and others who are skeptical about putting $40 million worth of public funds at risk in tough economic times.

In Assembly District 40 my candidate is outgoing Supervisor Pete Livermore, a fiscal conservative who opposes feel-good projects like Nugget redevelopment and our money-losing ice rink. And in a local school board race I’m backing friend and neighbor Tom Keeton, a five-year volunteer elementary school math tutor.

I’ll see you at the polls on June 8.

• Guy W. Farmer has been a Carson City voter since 1962.