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Fierce fight expected in key 2022 Nevada races

Primary voting
Posted at 5:14 PM, Jun 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-15 21:23:32-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Will Nevada’s incumbent governor and senator be able to retain their seats, or will the winds of change come calling in November? The nominees are set for the gubernatorial and senate races in Nevada which are expected to be closely watched.

"I think we're looking at a very competitive election cycle."

A cycle showcasing fierce battles between Republican opponents and Democratic incumbents-in Nevada’s general election in key races. Republican, and Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo is now set to face off against Democratic Governor Steve Sisolak. Former Attorney General Adam Laxalt getting the nod from the GOP to try and unseat Democratic Senator Catherine Cortez Masto.

RELATED STORY: 2022 Nevada Primary Election Results

UNLV history professor Michael Green says the current political climate nationwide favors Republicans in part because President Biden has a poor approval rating. Those low numbers hurt Democratic candidates.

"It's hard to separate all of that. I think it used to be easier. The old saying is all politics is local. I think it's less local than it used to be,” he said.

Both Laxalt and Lombardo were endorsed by former President Trump. Laxalt supports the former president's claims of election fraud while Lombardo has taken a more moderate stand. Green says the endorsements show a pragmatic approach by the former president.

"He's frankly been trying to make sure he's on the winning side,” he said.

RELATED STORY: Republicans, Democrats look ahead to general election in Nevada

Green says Nevada voters are known to have an independent streak and cites the 2010 red wave election as an example.

"It's always worth remembering that was the. Election year Harry Reid was supposedly definitely going to lose. He didn't and that also suggests that Nevadans can be cranky and contrary when they're in the mood,” he said.

College of Southern Nevada history professor Sondra Cosgrove says non-partisan voters could tilt the races one way or another. They make up 30 percent of registered voters in the state.

"How many of those independent are going to fall for Democrats or Republicans or how many of them are going to barrel through and be very independent come election day in November?" she said.