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tv   Campaign 2020 Interview with Nevada Political Reporter Jon Ralston  CSPAN  July 17, 2020 10:19pm-10:31pm EDT

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before the house judiciary committee on tuesday, july 28. watch live coverage on c-span. watch anytime on, or listen on the go the c-span radio app. the summer months, reach out to your elected officials with c-span's congressional directory. it contains all the contact information you need to stay in touch with members of congress and state governors. ater your copy online today >> joining us from las vegas is "thealston, editor of nevada independent. with three months before the election, give us the political lay of the land between jill biden and president donald trump?
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jon: democrats have a formidable machine the last three cycles here. hillary clinton beat donald trump by 2.5 points, but it was closer than it looked because -- then it looked because the race was basically over after early voting here and democrats had banked enough votes. in polls been ahead here only slightly outside the margin of error in polling there hasn't been a lot of public polling. but democrats have a substantial registration advantage, which they have had for many years now, including 100 to 4000 voters in clark county, which is where loss vegas is, 70% of the vote rate very difficult for a republican to win statewide in nevada with that kind of firewall the democrats have in clark county. ago, the seems so long nevada caucuses in which bernie
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sanders one handily with 40% of the democratic vote. many were beginning to write off joe biden. so much has changed since then. int about sanders support ?evada, and joe biden jon: sanders one in a landslide essentially over joe biden, but it was different because they count the votes differently in a caucus. then he had a disastrous showing and new hampshire, and the rest is history. but the progressive wing of the democratic party here is not much different than the left wing of the democratic party elsewhere. the imperative to beat donald speak,ill tromp, so to mp, so to speak, the
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disappointment in joe biden or the disappointment and bernie sanders not being the nominee. but that is going to be the key for biden across the country, being able to do in some areas what hillary clinton was unable to do, to get the far left to turn up for him. the vphow important is pick free democrats and about a? -- vp pick for democrats in nevada? : that has changed since the george floyd killing. the minority community in the african-american community in nevada has been active, especially on social media, in arguing and african-american woman should be on the ticket. so i think there might be disappointment if biden does not kamala harris or val
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demings. but we have been around long, and vice presidential picks don't usually make a huge difference. more than any election we have seen in some time, biden is going to be advised to follow the hippocratic oath of politics, which is due no harm with that pick. steve: a lot of speculation early on about one of your home state senators, kathy cortez masco. she took her name out of consideration. why? >> i have known catherine cortez masco for more than 30 years. could be said that she is a politician who was in attorney general and senator, she is to some extent apolitical. i don't think she has any interest of being on a vice presidential ticket with biden. i think she was like to buy the attention. there are good reasons to say, based on my do no harm policy, that she would be very good. she is very smart, careful, disciplined, but she is also in
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the head of the democratic senatorial campaign committee, and she has invested a lot of time in that, even though that is not really in her wheelhouse either. i think she didn't want the distraction of being taken away from that great and i don't think it is something she has ever really wanted. she has dreamed of being a u.s. senator for most of her adult life. she has that job now, and i think she loves it. this with, afaced lot can happen between now and election day. but when you talk to democrats ralston, aon, jon lot of speculation they could recapture control of the senate. what would that mean for nevada? really good question, because catherine cortez masto and jacky rosen were just elected in the last cycle, so they are not really high in seniority in the minority party right now. but if the democrats were to take the senate, catherine
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cortez masto, as head of the democratic senatorial campaign committee, would get credit for that understanding would rise in the senate. rosen would only be in the second part of her first term, so she probably wouldn't have much influence, but catherine cortez masto moves up the ranks, and that will help jacky rosen and nevada as well. for many years, a small state like nevada really couldn't do much, until harry reid became one of the most powerful people in the history of the state, becoming minority and then majority leader of the u.s. senate. and i am sure he has talked to catherine cortez masto about that, because he anointed her to replace him. steve: is nevada a swing state? jon: great question, steve. i wrote a column after the last election, saying that nevada is a blue state. and it wasn't republicans who were upset with me, it was
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actually the democrats. because if you are declared a blue state, then you are not going to get as much investment from the national party. and the democrats want to keep saying nevada is in play. listen, it is still 100 days or so from early voting starting here in nevada, and you can't say anything for sure, but nevada is a heavily leaning blue state. recentlyt harry reid was interviewed and said he advised biden to invest here, so clearly he is worried, as a behind-the-scenes kingmaker and influential force, that national democrats will not invest here. democrats dominate the state now, steve. there is only one republican statewide elected official, the secretary of state, who pretty much as to act nonpartisan the legislature is controlled by almost super majorities of democrats. they permeate the state and so the state is clearly a lien blue
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state, but the local democratic party does not want to lose the resources that are invested during a presidential campaign, so they will keep saying swing state. it is difficult to make that argument anymore. steve: and of course a year that is going to be unlike any other in terms of how candidates most of ito far, virtually. when you say invest in the state, it is not necessarily going to mean candidates like joe biden and donald trump are campaigning in person, but in on the ground effort, much of it done virtually or through advertising, correct? jon: you are absolutely right in all of that. it is all about voter registration. democrats have a sizable advantage. in person campaigning is not going to do much at this point. it is going to be very difficult. as we sit here, we don't know what the pandemic is going to be like for the next few months, and how it will limit or not limit campaigning.
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but money matters in politics, and money spent wisely, especially now. don't forget, it is still not clear whether what they did in audio]ent -- [no -- balloting is going to occur in the general election, and what the impact of that will be on both parties. the economy here is so dependent on that two miles of road known as las vegas boulevard south, and las vegas strip. it was shut down, now it is reopened, although some places more than others. some are thinking about furloughing employees again. the legislature is, as we sit
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here, in a special session, trying to figure out how to file $1.2 billion budget hole, because here in this state, we are so dependent on gaming and sales taxes. i could make an argument that we have been hurt disproportionately from almost any other state by what has happened, because the economy is so reliant on tourism. is thejon ralston editor, of "the nevada independent" joining us from las vegas. thanks for joining us. jon: thank you. ♪ >> c-span has unfiltered coverage of congress, the white house, the supreme court and public policy events. c-span'satch all of public affairs programming on television, online, or listen on our free radio app. and be part of the national conversation through c-span's daily "washington journal
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program, or through our social media feeds. she, created by america's cable television companies as a public service and brought to you today by your television provider. ♪ our guest this week on the communicators is representative ro khanna. he is a democrat from california and represents much of silicon valley. our guest reporter is emily birnbaum of protocol. iq both, for being on "the communicators" this week. representative khanna: thank you for having us. peter: as a representative of silicon valley, how would you describe the representation of some member companies in washington right now. -- right now? there isative khanna: a lot of positive sentiment. check


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