Jeanette Strong: The future of our state and country

“This race was set to determine the future of our state, and Nevadans chose to protect our democracy. You chose to deliver for the people of this great state and our country.” Cisco Aguilar, Nevada Secretary of State-elect, Nov. 15, on the 2022 election.

Millions of Americans voted in the mid-term elections. Some voted for reproductive rights, some for gun rights, many because they feared inflation and crime. Millions voted to protect democracy against those who would subject us to authoritarian rule.

Nevada’s results overall show that democracy has indeed been protected. Both major parties had victories, and most importantly, the candidates who would have damaged our state didn’t win.

Republicans gained the governorship, lieutenant governorship, and office of state controller, as well as returning Republican Mark Amodei to the House of Representatives. Democrats retained the offices of attorney general and treasurer, and elected a new secretary of state. They also returned Democratic Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto to Congress. Although I would have preferred that Gov. Steve Sisolak was re-elected, the mix of political party victories showed that Nevada voters recognized the most dangerous candidates when they saw them.

The Republican candidates for attorney general, treasurer and secretary of state were so dangerous that Nevada Republican leaders actually formed groups to oppose them and support their Democratic rivals. If the Republican candidates had been elected, it’s hard to grasp the amount of damage they could have done to our state. Instead, Nevadans chose to go with the candidates who will keep our state safe and prosperous.

Around the country, Republican candidates claimed to care about rising crime and runaway inflation, implying they could fix the problems. Some talked about the budget deficit. Voters who chose those candidates probably expected the winners to actually create policies to address these issues.

Instead, Republicans have settled on a platform of revenge, retribution and investigations. One of their first targets is Hunter Biden, son of President Joe Biden and a man who hasn’t been involved in national politics in any way.

“Wednesday evening, Republicans formally won control of the House. Thursday morning, in the first public act of the new majority, senior House Republicans revealed their most urgent priority: They would investigate Hunter Biden.” (Washington Post, Nov. 18).

“‘If you look back, we picked up seats in New York, New Jersey, California,” said Mike DuHaime, a Republican strategist and public affairs executive. “These were not voters coming to the polls because they wanted Hunter Biden investigated – far from it. They were coming to the polls because they were upset about inflation. They’re upset about gas prices…’ But House Republicans used their first news conference after clinching the majority to discuss presidential son Hunter Biden.” (Reno Gazette Journal, Nov. 20)

Republicans claim they care about kitchen table issues, but their history proves the opposite. If Republicans were concerned about inflation, they would have praised President Barack Obama who kept inflation down to near zero.

“…average inflation over the four years of Obama’s presidency was the lowest of any presidential term going back a half century to the 1961-64 term of Kennedy/Johnson. It was substantially lower than inflation during Bush’s two terms, was also somewhat below inflation during Clinton’s two terms (when inflation was less than during Bush), and so on back to Kennedy/Johnson… Inflation during Obama’s first term averaged 1.5% a year.” (An Economic Sense, Feb. 5, 2013)

Republicans would have supported President Bill Clinton, who balanced the federal budget and was paying down the national debt. The fact that Republicans constantly criticized these presidents proves they are more interested in demonizing their enemies than in actually solving the problems they claim they care about.

Republicans will now waste time and taxpayer money investigating people most Americans aren’t concerned about, while neglecting solutions to real problems. If Republicans were honest, they would acknowledge that high inflation is a world-wide problem, not created by Democrats. They would recognize that statistics show crime tends to be higher in so-called “red” areas than in “blue” areas.

Since Republicans have no solutions to these issues, all they know how to do is whine. All they can offer is hate and revenge and playing the victim. They hope investigating Hunter Biden and others will disguise the fact that they don’t know how to fix anything.

Until they grow up, we’ll all have to suffer through their incompetence. In the meantime, I hope Gov.-elect Joe Lombardo has the courage and wisdom to do what is right for Nevada. We shall see.

Jeanette Strong, whose column appears every other week, is a Nevada Press Association award-winning columnist. She may be reached at


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