As James Oscarson gets into the thick of his re-election campaign for state Assembly District 36, the Republican incumbent wants to focus on the issues of the area, not his opponent’s campaign.
Oscarson explained that his campaign has not changed despite a close primary election win in June. He will focus on those who call District 36 home, which includes Nye and Lincoln counties, and portions of Clark County.
“My campaign strategy was and is to be out in the community and to listen to the concerns and issues that are facing the voters,” Oscarson said. “At the end of the day, it is the voters’ needs and concerns I am representing. That is what I am continuing to do. That is what is most important.”
With various issues plaguing the district, Oscarson said that water is at the top of the list.
“Water is our single biggest issue in Nye County,” he said. “The state over-allocated the 162 Basin many years ago and that problem cannot and should not be balanced on the backs of domestic well owners. Currently, the state water engineer has the right to regulate by priority and many domestic wells would be significantly impacted.
“The Legislative Commission on Water, which I co-chaired, has submitted legislation to limit the state engineer’s authority with regard to domestic wells.”
The incumbent explained that he hopes that a bill he helped introduce to pass will help protect domestic well owners.
“I have requested a Bill Draft Request (BDR) to address part of the problem with the water issue,” Oscarson said. “Currently, the owners of water rights are required to use or lose their water rights. If they do not do this, the state can simply take their water right away from them. This is a ridiculous practice, especially when it is claimed that we are in the middle of a drought.
“I believe that needs to be changed and my BDR addresses that issue. I am very proud to represent the domestic well owners in my district and throughout the state.”
Opponent and brothel owner Dennis Hof has spent a fair share of his campaign attacking Oscarson and the lawmaker’s past decisions.
In 2015, Oscarson was part of the majority of the Nevada Legislature that overwhelmingly voted for a $1.1 billion of extended and new taxes that represented one of the largest tax packages in state’s history. The bill was to support Gov. Brian Sandoval’s statewide education plans. This vote is at the forefront of Hof’s multimedia assault.
“I know the voters of Nye County have had many questions about the tax plan, and I’ve always been happy to answer those,” Oscarson said. “Many rumors and outright lies have been spread trying to scare seniors and hard-working families into believing they would be paying more in taxes. People are now realizing that’s not the case, their taxes stay the same, small business taxes stay the same, this tax was paid by large, out-of-state companies.”
Despite the backlash, Oscarson said that the bill sent money toward education, something that is in dire need throughout the state.
“That money (SB 483) helped us send more dollars directly to our classrooms to help our students. I know, we can’t just throw money at education to fix the problem. That’s why we put in place strict accountability measures to ensure the new funds were working and we enacted the strongest school choice law in the country.”
Despite Hof saying that he’d be worried about his gun rights if Oscarson is re-elected, the Republican nominee explained that his track record on the subject is evident.
“A critical issue is the constant attack on our Second Amendment rights,” he said. “My voting record is very clear. I have consistently sponsored or co-sponsored pro-gun legislation since being elected to office. I voted for removing, and passed, gun registration statutes (blue cards) in Nevada and increased the doctrine allowing you to protect yourself.”
Hof pointed out that he is a National Rifle Association (NRA) member in an interview with the Pahrump Valley Times, but Oscarson wants to make it clear that he is the association’s choice in the race.
“I am currently the endorsed candidate by the NRA for Assembly District 36. My opponent, the pimp, is not,” Oscarson said. “I will continue to fight for and preserve the Second Amendment for my constituents, friends, and family.”
With Hof owning several legal brothels throughout the state, including two in Nye County, Oscarson believes the voters will take his line of work into account come Nov. 8.
“My opponent is a self-proclaimed pimp, who wants to allow 18-year-olds into the brothels to work and play. I think that the public understands that he essentially wants to recruit high school students. So voters will have to ask themselves, do they want Dennis Hof representing themselves and their children?”
Oscarson said that the industry in which Hof works has a tendency for bad media output, and that he believes that stigma would follow the Libertarian candidate with him if he’s elected.
“We all remember the media circus that surrounded the Lamar Odom incident and all the negative press coverage about our community,” he said. “My opponent’s reality show about one of his brothels was also involved in a murder case in 2009. I think that the public understands that a pimp is not the person to represent their mothers, their sisters, or their daughters.”
Oscarson questioned why his opponent is so concerned with him when Hof couldn’t figure out what political position he wanted to vie for before challenging the incumbent.
“My opponent did not even know what seat he wanted to run for, so he has no real issues to run on about what he is going to do,” he said. “First, it was for a Reno state Senate seat, then, it was for U.S. Senate against Dr. Joe Heck and then, he decided that since he owns a brothel in Nye County he’d move down here and run against me. This isn’t a man that has any serious public policy views; he just wants to be elected to public office to better promote his brothel business, like he does with his reality show ‘Cathouse.’
“I do not believe that the good people of Nye County want to be the subject of my opponent’s next X-rated reality show.”
When it comes down to Election Day, Oscarson is confident that he will win, and that his work in the district and his relationship with those in the area will carry him through.
“I believe the voters of Assembly District 36 will trust me to represent them again because I’ve approached the job in a dignified manner, a word my opponent is unfamiliar with, and sought to stand up for rural Nevada every opportunity I’ve had,” he said. “We’ve seen great progress here and I’d like to continue to build on that. I ask the voters to stop and think about a pimp representing them in Carson City.
“The capital of our great state is a place where serious decisions are contemplated and made for everyone,” Oscarson said. “The only negotiations this man knows are those involving how much to charge for services his girls perform at his brothels. My opponent wants the public to validate his lifestyle with their vote. We all deserve better.”
Contact reporter Mick Akers at email@example.com. Follow @mickakers on Twitter.