Letters to the editor for Friday, June 21, 2013

Best candidates often don’t get near ballot

In The Wall Street Journal an article states that the Democrat and Republican senatorial committees are having trouble getting top candidates to run for Senate seats because of a reputation that has been tarnished by bickering and gridlock. This means that when we go to the polls, we will vote for the second or third team candidates. Hard to win when your best players are on the bench watching.

A spokesman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee said that strong, lesser-known candidates often come forward after a high-profile recruit takes a pass. “There is always another card in the deck.” Too often that card is weak and turns out to be a joker, like Sharron Angle.

A bunch of people in the Senate are weak, like our Heller and Reid, that don’t know the first thing about governing or compromise. When they get to Washington they play follow the leader and neither has the backbone to stand up for what the people want. Nevada needs stronger senators, but who with any pride or intelligence would want the job?

Voters must start asking candidates if they are going to Washington to govern for the country, are they going to Washington to govern for their party or are they going to Washington to scratch the backs of special interests in order to become wealthy? Are senators inclined to say and do stupid things just to pacify the extremists in their party? We really have hit bottom when we even consider asking such a question of candidates.

Riley Kerr

Carson City

Gun-control support numbers were rigged

Much ado circulated regarding “86 percent of Nevadans” that supported a background check for private firearms purchases. As most know, Senate Bill 221 mandated firearm background checks as well as streamlined mental health reporting to the NICS system. This bill was vetoed by the governor. The sponsor/author of this bill was Sen. Justin Jones of Clark County. As a fan of statistical data since my studies and concurrent bachelor’s in geology from the University of Nevada, I contacted the senator about his “86 percent of Nevadans” number.

After studying the questions in the survey of 800 Nevadans (0.029 percent of the population), it became clear that the critical questions about “gun control” were leading those surveyed in a fashion that appeared to favor gun control. The Nevada Legislature website has a poll section. The data for Senate Bill 221 totaled 3,650 Nevada residents’ opinions. In order to vote, you must include your name, address and zip code. The results are that 561 supported and 3,087 were against. That equates to 85 percent against Senate Bill 221, with a survey population nearly four times larger.

Gov. Sandoval’s office set up an automated polling system on this bill. Results reported by the Associated Press are as follows: 180,460 “votes”; of these, 27,465 in support and 152,995 against. Lo and behold, 85 percent emerges once again, the polar opposite of Sen. Jones’ “survey.” MAIG set up an 888 number encouraging passage and connected directly with the governor’s office to vote. You be the judge.

Dan Zampirro

Carson City


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