Joyce Newman: Nevada Democrats have set the table |

Joyce Newman: Nevada Democrats have set the table

By Joyce Newman

I’ve watched Nevada politics long enough to remember when Republicans like Sen. Bill Raggio worked with Democrats like Assembly Speaker Joe Dini to creatively solve Nevada’s problems.

But now, as Nevada experiences a $1.2 billion pandemic-induced shortfall and our unemployment rate is at an all-time high, Republicans sit on the sidelines, no solutions in hand, throwing stones at Gov. Sisolak and Democratic lawmakers while the Democrats craft budget-balancing legislation.

And as COVID-19 ravages our communities, Nevada Republican Party Chair Michael McDonald, in lockstep with the Trump campaign, suggests we all wait in lines at the polls on election day, risking exposure to COVID-19, rather than allowing us to mail in our ballots as we did safely and effectively for the primary election in June.

Donald Trump, taking time off from golf, is suing Nevada for balancing our right to vote with our desire to stay well. Trump, who has repeatedly voted by mail and surrounds himself with people who are tested daily, would put voters at risk because he fears losing in November.

Nevada continues to rank among the worst in the nation with respect to education quality, but Republicans offer no solutions to the revenue shortfalls and in fact vote against increases in the state’s archaic mining tax rate, set in the constitution in 1864.

The worldwide pandemic has well-illustrated the risk of relying on the gaming industry as our main source of budgetary support, but what major-league companies want to move to a state where their employees’ children have so few educational options?

Nevada, it’s time to decide if we want to continue to be a third-rate state. It’s time to put politics aside to arrive at bipartisan solutions to our state’s challenges. Democrats have set the table, it’s time for Republicans to join them.

Joyce Newman lives in Carson City.