What Does The Washoe County Party Do To Help Candidates?

We’ve had many inquiries regarding what the Washoe County Republican Party’s role is in getting local candidates elected this cycle. While it may not be obvious to many of you, we have been very busy working in the background in various ways assisting candidates as they request it. The job of the Washoe County Republican Party is not to run a candidate’s campaign but rather provide information and guidance. It is up to each candidate to manage their own campaign.

Here is some of what we are doing:

  1. Electioneering. We have a team that gathers data and does analytics for each district. This is an ongoing process. As the numbers in a district change so does the data and analytics. Walk books are compiled from this information and made available to every candidate. NO CANDIDATE HAS TO COMPILE THEIR OWN DISTRICT INFORMATION. This saves the candidate an enormous amount of time and money that can be spent elsewhere.
  2. Walkers. This election cycle the County Party has hired and raised money to pay trained interns to walk on behalf of candidates. To date we have 27 interns (17 in Washoe and 10 in Clark County).We developed a customized program and spent time training them in order to maximize our effectiveness when knocking on doors. Our program is one-of-a-kind and large donors were so impressed they asked that we conduct this program in Clark County. We said yes and the program is underway. Let me be clear. No money earmarked for Washoe County is being spent in Clark County. Those large donors have fully funded the walk program in Clark County. But why should we help Clark County? Because we MUST win Nevada back. Clark County is the largest county and the most difficult county to flip. If we don’t win Clark County, we will not win the state.This program has never been done before. But it was a risk that is paying off. We are reaching more people in Washoe and Clark than we have in the past with a high efficacy rate for information collected. This information is fed to our Electioneering team who then is able to update district information for candidates.
  3. Slate Mailers. We utilized one Slate Mailer in the last election cycle in Washoe County and had great success. So much so that we decided to do two Slate Mailers in Washoe this election cycle. We not only will be sending to Washoe County Republican households, but we will also be sending to Non-Partisan or Undecided households.We also created a Slate Mailer for Clark County. This is the first time they will have this tool to utilize. Again, this was funded by large donors whose interest lies with Clark County. We did not use any money earmarked for Washoe County. And as with the Walking Program this was necessary for us to provide this to ensure Republican households receive this critical information.
  4. The Get Out The Vote ads are crucial to assisting with getting people to the polls. This cycle we not only were able to secure a donation of radio airtime, but we were also able to budget for additional airtime. We estimate between the donation and our contribution we will be able to secure approximately 200 radio spots before the election. The radio spots will air all over the state. Why? Because we need every vote we can get if we are going to turn this state around and eliminate the threat of Democrat’s mismanagement and bad decisions.
  5. Social Media. If you don’t follow us on Facebook or Twitter, then please do so. We post lots of information regarding local government. In addition, we have all candidates listed on our website at washoegop.org. We’ve also started up our in-house studio and have been filming videos that will be posted on our YouTube channel shortly. While the topics vary, we intend to interview as many candidates as are available. Last week we interviewed Jeff Church.

Unfortunately, what we cannot do is store and distribute Candidate’s campaign information. We did not make this decision lightly but rather based it on resources like volunteers to assemble and distribute, storage, and after election cycle clean up. We garnered a sizeable expense in time and cost in removing candidate materials after the last election as most did not opt to retrieve their information.

However, if there is a club that is willing to store and assemble and clean up, we are happy to offer our annex at headquarters for assembly. While our volunteer resources are maxed out and we have no storage space we are happy to allow the clubs to utilize the space for assembly only. Just let us know when you would like to do that.

Should you have further questions or suggestions please contact us at secretary@washoegop.org or you can reach me directly at vjmichael.vm@gmail.com.


Valerie Michael

Communications Director

Washoe County Republican Party


Income Inequality and Poverty in the United States

By Ron Knecht – 29September2020

Democrats, progressives and Joe Biden’s presidential campaign harp about income inequality and poverty in the United States continuously.  As if we were an ancient feudal society or worse than many modern third-world dictatorships.  The last three years, they’ve falsely claimed things have gotten worse – more unequal and greater poverty – since Donald Trump was elected.

They spin nonsensical narratives and flawed analyses purporting to show Trump’s policies, Republicans and capitalism are responsible for the increases they falsely allege in income inequality and poverty.  They even claim these phantom increases are not unfortunate outcomes of well-intended but flawed policies, but instead are the intended results.  They claim Trump, Republicans and free market proponents hate and want to oppress the poor and middle classes.

It’s not enough for them to claim income inequality increases are the consequences of market capitalism being a zero- or negative-sum proposition – which it is not.  Instead, they make up beliefs, motivations and memes their opponents allegedly hold, and in debates, writings, videos and cartoons jam them down the throats of those opponents.  Karl Marx originated this tradition by arguing capitalists would never let workers’ wages rise high enough even to just make their lives moderately comfortable.

On the other hand, leftists never recognize the predatory and mistaken nature of their own politics.  Instead, they are near saints, motivated by pure altruism and goodness.  To reach this conclusion, they invent memes and narratives showing them always valiantly fighting for the powerless, disenfranchised victims of capitalism, capitalists and Republicans.  For example, them stopping heartless Republicans from throwing Granny in a wheelchair off a cliff.

Another example: they passed legislation to pay some laid off workers more than they make on their jobs.  When Republicans want to cut those benefits back, the left demagogued them as heartless.

Perhaps most important, the leftists refuse to address the real facts and numbers, instead trafficking only in memes and simplistic narratives.  If they address numbers at all, it’s in the most simplistic and misrepresentative terms.

Comes now a definitive example.  Earlier this month, the U.S. Census Bureau issued an 88-page analysis of Income and Poverty in the United States: 2019.  Let’s compare the left’s poverty and income inequality claims to the facts.

Leftists claim real incomes have been flat or declining for the low- and middle-income portions of the population.  However, Census shows that America’s real median household climbed to $68,703 in 2019, a 6.8 percent increase and the largest since the start of these data in1967.  The $4,379 one-year growth was more than the cumulative $3,021 increase in eight years of the Obama/Biden administration.

Further, as in the first three Trump years, these benefits were widespread and affected minority groups most.  While the increase was 5.9 percent for Whites, it was 7.1 percent for Hispanic Americans, 7.9 percent for Black Americans and 10.6 percent for Asian Americans.  The 2019 real income levels were the highest ever for all groups.

Their claims that Trump tax cuts burdened everyone else to benefit the rich?  The income growth among low-income households dropped the poverty rate by 1.3 percent to 10.5 percent, the lowest rate ever by a good margin.  It lifted 4.1-million people out of poverty, the largest such effect since 1966.   During the Obama/Biden years, the number of people living in poverty increased by 787,000.

In climbing out of poverty too, minorities did best.  Compared to the overall gain of 1.3 percent, Hispanics rang up 1.8 percent gains, Blacks 2.0 percent and Asians 2.8 percent.  It was an all-time low for every race and ethnic group.  Even more salient, child poverty decreased to 14.4 percent, the lowest rate since 1973, and 18 percent lower than at the end of the Obama/Biden administration.

Over the first three Trump years, 2016-19, median real income increased 9.2 percent, and 6.6-million people rose out of poverty, the best record of any administration.  Blacks had their largest gain ever, 1.2-million people.

Income inequality?  It declined for the second consecutive year, as the income share of the bottom 20 percent of the population grew a statistically significant 2.4 percent. The overall technical measures of income inequality grew by statistically significant figures, too.

And that’s what Biden, et al. want to reverse?

Ron Knecht, MS, JD & PE(CA) has served Nevadans as state controller, a higher education regent, economist, college teacher and legislator.  Contact him at RonKnecht@aol.com.

2020 Nevada Ballot Issues

There will be five issues up for vote on the 2020 Election Ballot. Below are the issues and the official recommendations from the Washoe County Republican Party.

Issue                                                                          Vote Recommendation

Board of Regents                                                        NO

The ballot would remove the Board of Regents system from the state constitution, giving the Legislature more control over colleges and universities. The amendment would allow lawmakers to make changes without having to go through a five-year process of amending the constitution.

We do not want to give more power to the legislature, nor do we want to allow our constitution to be changed for the convenience of the legislature.

SAME-SEX MARRIAGE                                                NO

Though same-sex marriage is legal nationwide, Question 2 on the ballot would enshrine the right in Nevada’s constitution and remove existing language recognizing marriages only between a man and a woman. The amendment would also establish that religious organizations and clergy members have the right to refuse to perform a marriage.

Same sex marriage is already legal in Nevada. It is not necessary to “enshrine” it. Clergy have the right to refuse to perform a marriage.

BOARD OF PARDON                                                   NO

A proposed constitutional amendment regarding the state Board of Pardons will be Question 3 on the ballot. The board made up of the governor, state Supreme Court justices and the attorney general, would be required to meet at least four times a year. The amendment would also remove the governor’s power to veto a decision by the majority of the board.

We do not want to give power to the legislature to oversee the Board of Pardons.

VOTERS’ RIGHTS                                                         NO

Question 4 on the ballot would enshrine an existing voters’ bill of rights under state law to the Nevada Constitution. It would guarantee voters can have their ballots recorded accurately and can cast votes without intimidation or coercion, among other rights.

This already exists per our state constitution. It is not necessary to “enshrine” it.

RENEWABLE ENERGY                                                 NO

A proposal that will be listed as question 6 would amend the state’s constitution to stipulate that electric utilities generate or acquire at least 50% of power from renewable resources to by 2030. The measure was passed by voters in 2018 but needs voter approval again this year. Sisolak last year signed the same standards into law, but the constitutional amendment would make it much harder to change the future.

This bill if passed would cause power rates to increase, and like California, would subject Nevadans to power shortages forcing rolling blackouts.

Democracy, Capitalism, Culture and Civilization: Fragile?

By Ron Knecht – 15 September 2020

Usually, when we think of the most fundamental things – here, democracy, capitalism, culture and even civilization itself – we assume they are mostly fixed and unchanging, except maybe for the better.

That allows us to make choices about consumption, investing, marriage, children, planning for the future, and other activities reasonably, not by guessing.

The extraordinary events this last year have called these assumptions into question.

Consider our form of government.  By “democracy,” we mean republicanism: most importantly the rule of law; choice of key government authorities via election; constitutionally limited government; individual rights and liberty; etc.  Current riots, looting, arson, theft, assault and even murder by Antifa, Black Lives Matter and their allies threaten our form of government, as well as the capitalist economy, to the point they put civilization itself at risk.

This threat is so great it tends to obscure the extreme differences offered by this year’s state and national elections – the greatest in 160 years.  These radical differences have been developing over half a century in government, economics and education.  So, they should be less surprising than they are.  But they have emerged and come to a head so fast that they shock us.

And what happens if the results of the coming elections so displease the anarchists, nihilists and their ilk that they fly into a cosmic rage seeking to incinerate all of us?

The slow growth and resulting damage to our economy and human wellbeing, however, has been developing the last 30 years and became manifest over the last decade.  Very slow long-term growth and its consequences, while devastating in many ways, is something we’ve been trying to adjust to as the new normal since the Great Recession.

The economic damage from the Covid-19 pandemic and the resulting shutdowns of so much activity and life are another matter, with unknowable and likely devastating consequences, perhaps even in the long run.  Such an overwhelming one-time shock is unknown in our experience but for two world wars in the last century.

The economic and cultural damage and social disorientation from even those two wars was slower to develop and less uniformly destructive to our economy than the shutdowns.  Likewise, the pandemic of a century ago was less damaging and disorienting because state and local governments did not hugely over-react to it the way they have this one.

Economically, we’re well into uncharted waters.  Mapmakers of old often labeled such areas with warnings such as: “Here there be monsters.”  Our present circumstances have that feel.

While the economic prospects are a giant threatening void, the cultural outlook allows for some hope and optimism.  Yes, this year’s symphony, opera and dance seasons are cancelled, but major league, college and high school sports are trying to cobble together something.

On the other hand, beloved restaurants continue to fail in droves.  Candy dances, sidewalk and park fairs, and rodeo too.  But we can also take small comfort as many baseball fans long have in the words, “Wait ‘til next year.”

The cataclysm has not done as much damage nor interrupted literary and intellectual matters, and even the enjoyment of music and art at home, in good part because technology contributes to their continuity and access.  On the other hand, many folks no longer look primarily to religion for much hope.

So all this is scary and disorienting, even as the Pollyanna’s of the world occasionally lob water balloons of hope and optimism.  We also console ourselves with the notion that it can’t stay this bad or continue in negative directions forever.  Right?

Well, we hope right.  But the current political, economic and cultural damage were each unimaginable a year ago — let alone all three in concert.  Moreover, history shows that continuous progress in them was lacking for thousands of years before it began 250 years ago.

Economic growth was long essentially nil.  Politically, man exploited man as a rule, not an exception.  Culture was usually as poor as economics and politics.

When civilization’s lights went out with the fall of Rome’s empire, the Arthurian Legends arose to give the people some small hope.  I hope the fragility of democracy, capitalism, culture and civilization do not now require a similar comforting myth.

Ron Knecht, MS, JD & PE(CA), has served Nevadans as state controller, a higher education regent, economist, college teacher and legislator.  Contact him at RonKnecht@aol.com.

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