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Horsford aims to stave off three Congressional challengers

The race for Nevada’s Congressional District 4 seat in the 2020 general election is pitting candidates from four different political parties against one another, with the incumbent Democrat facing challenges from a Republican contender as well as candidates representing the Libertarian and Independent American parties.

Jonathan Royce Esteban

Libertarian

The Libertarian candidate for Nevada’s 4th Congressional District, Esteban, said he feels the actions and policies of elected representatives today seem to be solely driven by the two major political parties’ agendas, and that’s why he believes it’s high time voters begin to look outside of the Republican and Democrat parties for the answers they are seeking.

“When I first announced my candidacy, I really wanted it to represent the working-class people, I wanted to represent the everyday people. I feel that our representation in district 4 has been very absent, that Steven Horsford hasn’t quite connected with his constituents. I don’t feel that Horsford is working for Nevada, I feel that he is working for the party,” Esteban stated in his candidate’s interview.

“And I feel the same about my Republican opponent, Jim Marchant. I feel that both Jim Marchant and Steven Horsford are just another rubber stamp for a Republican or Democratic agenda,” Esteban continued. “That’s why I ran outside of the two-party system. I’m running as a Libertarian and there are some challenges to that but it really gives me the freedom to be an independent candidate on my own and to really take on positions that I feel align greater with Nevadans than with the national party.”

Esteban has a background in renewable energy, currently employed as a supervisor for Tesla and this exposure to the industry is a source of inspiration for some of what he’d like to address as a congressman. Rather than going about it by luring corporations into the industry with tax breaks and other incentives, however, Esteban said he’d like to see those incentives focused on individual residents and families.

“I don’t like corporate welfare, I don’t like corporations taking advantage of us,” Esteban asserted. “My experience working at Tesla has helped me understand that the private market can provide amazing solutions to sustainable energy that do not have to be subsidized. I think we can do things to transform the U.S. grid, which will include residential solar and other incentives that are focused toward the customer and not incentives and subsidies for the corporations, that will really help expand access to energy.”

Water, and its availability in the driest state in the nation, is another area of focus for Esteban, who said he felt this ties directly into another hot-button topic, that of nuclear energy. So long as the science shows it’s safe, he said nuclear energy could play a big role in Nevada’s future.

“I do support nuclear energy, I do believe there is huge potential in that to generate mass amounts of electricity. I think Nevada is a great candidate for that and you could tie in the enterprise of having one of those nuclear power plants to bring in water to Nevada. Water is a very important part of the nuclear process and I think we can add that infrastructure in, in central Nevada, where it can benefit the people as well,” Esteban detailed.

There’s a gamut of other subjects Esteban said he’d take time to delve into while in Congress, touching on travel tax incentives and his support for the concept behind a Universal Basic Income, among many others.

On criminal justice reform, which was his flagship policy area prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Esteban noted that he wants to see a more reformative system that aims to help reintegrate former prisoners back into society and he would 100% support the legalization of both marijuana and prostitution nationwide.

To learn more about Esteban’s run for Congress visit wwww.VoteforEsteban.com

Steven Horsford

Democrat

Incumbent Steven Horsford is seeking another two-year term as the Democratic representative of Nevada’s 4th Congressional District and he firmly believes that his experience at the federal level will be key in the coming years as America strives to recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Responding to the pandemic has been my number one priority as the representative for Nevada’s 4th Congressional District,” Horsford told the Pahrump Valley Times, remarking that he has already taken steps to attempt to avert lasting impacts from the crisis.

Honing in on the communities in Nye County, Horsford stated, “I am proud to have fought to secure what amounted to almost $8.5 million of direct funding from the state to Nye County, which was funded through the CARES Act, which is something that I voted for …In addition, I have fought for and secured a $20,000 grant for Gabbs airport, to provide some economic relief and I focused on funding for Telehealth and distance learning, which are important needs in the community.”

Through his meetings and discussions with Nye County officials, he said he has also become familiar with other areas that are important for the county, stating, “I know that Payment in Lieu of Taxes and the reauthorization of the Secure Rural Schools program are among the top priorities that they need support on.”

Back to the topic of the pandemic, Horsford said so far, Congress has been concentrating on relief and assistance but over the next two years, that focus will shift to one of recovering and rebuilding the economy and he is even now eyeing bills that will aid the country in that process.

“I voted on the Moving Forward Act, which is the comprehensive infrastructure bill that will support communities, both rural and urban, around roads, water systems, broadband, community health centers, schools,” Horsford said, noting that this is just the beginning of what he feels needs to be done. Both health care and job creation, for instance, are items that Horsford said he wants the chance to continue to address.

“It’s about prioritizing health care, protecting the health care we have while we work to expand it. I am proud that under my two years, we have worked to make health care more affordable, including in some of our rural counties, by making more options available to people and bringing down the cost of prescription drugs, which is astronomically high,” he proclaimed.

As to job creation, Horsford stated, “It’s what I have been about, not just as a member of Congress, but in every role that I have worked in, helping people get the skills, education and training they need to get better paying jobs and job opportunities. And I think Nye County is uniquely positioned to pursue some of those areas in the future and it’s one of the things I want to continue to work with local officials on.

“We are going to need a more robust recovery plan at the federal level, in partnership with our state and local partners and the private sector, in order to get people back to work, get our economy going and be able to rebuild better, and more inclusively, than what we’ve experienced even before COVID,” he concluded. “I have the experience to continue to deliver for Nevada. I have worked to do that as a member of not just the Ways and Means Committee but I am the only Nevada member of the delegation on natural resources and I know how to work with our local and state counterparts to deliver for Nevada.”

For more information on Horsford visit www.StevenHorsford.com

Jim Marchant

Republican

A former Nevada assemblyman, Marchant is aiming to re-enter the political realm in 2021 as the representative for Congressional District 4 and he has some strong opinions when it comes to his Democratic opponent, incumbent candidate Steven Horsford, whom Marchant said he believes is so liberal as to be more on the socialist side of the spectrum than the Democratic side.

“I’m up against a radical socialist in Steven Horsford,” Marchant declared in his candidate’s interview. “He votes 94% with AOC (Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez) and the Squad and I do not believe that he represents the values of a majority of Nevadans. Given the choice, I think that voters will replace him with a candidate who actually lives here and cares about Nevadans, like me.”

Marchant said he himself is defined by his conservative values, remarking. “There is a clear line between the two of us. Horsford is for socialism and government oppression, whereas I am for freedom and free market capitalism, where the government leaves you alone, except for some very specific instances. I believe in small government, the way the founders intended it when they wrote our Constitution. That’s what we need to get back to… The bottom line is the difference between freedom and oppression. If you look at the stuff that is going on all around the country, with all of the Antifa stuff and the violence and burning of businesses and even government buildings, we’re in a battle between good and evil now. And we have to prevail, the good has to prevail.”

Marchant has a list of subjects he wants to pursue as a Congressional representative, first and foremost of which is the economic recovery of the country in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Marchant said he was supportive of the mitigation measures put in place when the virus first hit but he simply feels the restrictions have gone on too long, resulting in devastation to the economy.

“We need to get our economy open again. No more of this 50%, half capacity, whatever, it’s time we open our economy back up 100% and I would push for that in any way that I could,” Marchant stated. “This COVID crisis was a disaster for us and we have to get our economy back open.”

Dovetailing with this focus, Marchant said he would push to hold China accountable for the part that country played in the COVID-19 crisis, asserting that he believed China did not do all it could to contain the virus and mitigate its damages. While he was at it, Marchant said he’d also work to bring manufacturing back to America from China, particularly the manufacturing of prescription drugs. “I am very, very concerned about that and want to work very hard to bring those jobs back to America and specifically, to district 4 here in Nevada. I want to bring pharmaceutical manufacturing, specifically, to Nevada,” he said.

Marchant then turned to another topic of intense debate, that of law enforcement and the calls for defunding these agencies.

“We need to support our law enforcement. Can you imagine that any legislator in any body would ever support defunding our law enforcement?” Marchant stated, clearly perturbed. “I just don’t understand it. I am a huge supporter of our law enforcement and first responders and would never support defunding them. I’m not saying there aren’t some bad apples but this isn’t how you deal with it. You don’t defund entire agencies to deal with that.”

Voters can learn more about Marchant’s bid for Congress at www.jimmarchant.com

Barry Rubinson

Independent American Party

Running as a member of the Independent American Party, this is Rubinson’s very first time running for a political office of any sort.

Underscoring his lack of affiliation with one of the two major political parties, Rubinson said he believes the highly partisan nature of politics is actually a major source of the problems the country is facing today. As someone free of the restraints he feels are imposed on candidates by those parties, he believes he would make a good representative of the people and would work to do what he feels to be right, rather than what a particularl party might want.

“I don’t know how this country is going to survive as what we were. If the main criteria in deciding who is going to get your vote is who’s bribing you the most this week, or if the main criteria if you’re a legislator is, what does the party want you to say, to me that is the biggest problem in America right now,” Rubinson asserted. “People tend to worry more about their re-election than they do about what they are doing in Congress. These men and women have basically sold their souls to the parties. For example, if you’re a Democrat congressional representative right now, if you don’t do what Nancy Pelosi wants, the piece of change you’re going to get from the party is going to go away. Does that mean you’re going to be able to think about your constituents over your re-election? That worries me a lot.”

As for his own take, Rubinson said he is something of a mixture. “I have both some right-wing tendencies and some left-wing tendencies, depending on the topic. That’s why I am an Independent,” he explained, noting that the Independent American Party did not exactly reflect his views but it came much closer than the others’ parties. “And because they are the Independent party, I take that word very seriously. I don’t belong to anybody’s particular cult.”

There’s a wide array of issues that Rubinson said he’d be interested in taking on at the congressional level, one of which was the issue of federally owned and managed public lands. He explained that in his opinion, those lands should be under the control of the state, remarking that Nevada resembles a crazy quilt in that it is a patchwork of lands managed by a variety of different agencies, all with their own unique set of rules. “I’d like to see something done about that. I don’t know if I have the wisdom to say exactly what, but it’s one of the things that I would be looking into hard,” Rubinson stated.

Education and the amount of money that goes toward the bureaucracy of the American education system was another point he’d like to address, stating, “Education is one of my biggest concerns. I think it can solve a lot of things but I don’t think the way we are doing it today solves anything.” A starting point here in Nevada, he added, would be reducing the size of the school districts.

Education also ties back into public assistance programs, with Rubinson adding that he is not a big advocate of government giveaways. Instead, he would prefer to see people given the education and tools they need to take care of themselves. Bringing manufacturing back to America so first-rate products can be right here in the country by its citizens is yet another area that Rubinson said he’d like to concentrate.

Rubinson directed voters to visit the Independent American Party website at www.IAPN.org to learn more about his campaign.

Contact reporter Robin Hebrock at rhebrock@pvtimes.com

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