Issues

  • Individual Rights
  • Taxes and Budget
  • Vaping Regulations
  • Jobs & Economy
  • Drugs
  • Guns
  • Education
  • Immigration
Individual Rights
As a proponent of individual rights for everyone, transgender rights are everybody's rights. Equality under the law is paramount to our republic, no matter the race, religion, or gender of the individual.

I was pleased to see the Clark County School District moving to more inclusive policies regarding transgender students, however the public reaction was discouraging. I believe in individual rights, providing the individual does not physically or financially hurt others. Our transgender students deserve the same respect as anyone else, regardless of personal opinion. They are a part of our community and should be treated as such, therefore I would support policies that are more inclusive. The most important thing is to provide a safe and comfortable environment for our children to learn. As this is a population who are often targets for bullying and violence, I would recommend providing trans locker rooms and restrooms. Since not all students come from families who support who they are, I would oppose any measure that would require parental consent, as this could set some students up for abuse at home. All students, regardless of gender, should feel free to express themselves in a safe environment.

This notion of all students feeling free to engage in non-violent self-expression does not solely apply to transgender students, but extends to all citizens and residents of the state of Nevada. The right to free speech and expression are fundamental to our society. We do not have to agree with everyone, we don't even have to like everyone, but we do have the responsibility to one another to protect each other's basic human rights, provided they are not engaging in acts of violence or fraud. Libertarians believe in the natural rights of the individual, so all groups are included, and all are equal.
Taxes and Budget
Nevada needs to honor the constitutional commitment to a balanced budget and keep taxes low enough to allow our businesses to grow and expand.

I do not believe it is appropriate to pick individual businesses for special favors. Any incentives need to be across the board, for the benefit of all businesses, not just the select privileged. Competition brings the best value, services, and products to the consumers. Additionally, we have seen the Commerce Tax hurt businesses since it's inception, so I will fight to end that tax. I favor tax plans that are simple, fair, and as low as possible. Our tax structure should be one that encourages economic growth in all businesses, from the newest small enterprise, to the largest corporation.

The end of the Commerce Tax is a top priority, as the recent Omnibus spending and steel tariffs will harm the economy nationwide. As we all know oh-so-well, when there is a nationwide recession, tourism suffers. Nevada's economy, being predominately a tourist economy, gets hit especially hard. Taxing our business owners out of business will make this much worse. Taxes to businesses and to tourists must be lowered in order to minimize the damage these short-sighted economic policies will cause. Occupational licensing requirements must be re-evaluated, simplified, and even done away with when unnecessary, in order to help our citizens expand into other industries should tourism dry up. We will all have to work together, and be very creative, in order to keep our economy strong should there be an economic crisis. We shouldn't wait for an emergency either, this should be what we are doing every day.

Politicians today have forgotten one simple fact: there is no such thing as state money, only taxpayer money. My plan is to post the budget, including details on every expenditure, on a public website so the taxpayers can see exactly where their money is going. The budget will be completely transparent and accessible to all citizens. Our elected representatives should be held accountable for irresponsible spending, cronyism, and all waste. By keeping the budget public, transparent, and accessible, we will be able to control spending as well as prevent and expose any corrupt practices within our government.

In a state where we have a balanced budget built into the Constitution, it is unacceptable to have over 3 billion in debt. As a state, we need to evaluate and eliminate wasteful spending, and get ourselves out of this sinkhole. We can cut spending by making our social programs more efficient and cost effective, rather than cutting benefits. While we grow our economy through responsible fiscal policy, we will see less of our citizens in need of a safety net. Corporate welfare is a much bigger hit to our budget than social programs ever will be. I am in favor of eliminating the practice altogether.  
Vaping Regulations
I am in full support of the vape industry and the legal battle to overturn the FDA regulations imposed 2016.

The vape industry may have saved my life. I was a heavy smoker, tired of coughing, and tired of spending so much due to the taxes, but I simply could not kick the habit. In July of 2015 I decided to check out a local vape shop to see if it would be a better option for my wallet and my lungs. I have not touched a cigarette since. One year later the FDA enacted a draconian regulation that has severely hurt the industry's ability to innovate and serve the needs of individuals with addiction to nicotine. Whether you are a vape enthusiast, think it's dumb, or don't really care one way or the other, this regulation is something to pay attention to, as it does have far reaching consequences for all.

Under the Appointments Clause of the US constitution, Federal regulations must be issued by an appointed head of the agency who was confirmed by the Senate. In the case of the vape regulations, it was signed by a clerk. This is one of many regulations that Federal agencies have issued in clear violation of this law. It is unconstitutional. Three separate lawsuits are going through the courts at this time to overturn this regulation on these grounds, by Pacific Legal. By law the Health and Human Services, or the FDA commissioner must sign off on all regulations for them to be legally valid. They have delegated this authority to an employee of the FDA, illegally, and this employee has gone on to issue hundreds of regulations which are constitutionally null and void.

Nevada needs a governor who will stand up to overreaching federal regulations, who will fight to nullify unconstitutional regulations, especially those which are damaging to our businesses, our rights to free speech, and our freedom of choice. The citizens of the United States need to stand up to a Federal government who routinely infringe on their rights while ignoring the rule of law. The people of Nevada can lead the rest of the country towards a greater level of accountability from the Federal government. Whether vape is an issue that is close to you or not, this issue is a current example of overreach that we can join together to stand against.
Jobs & Economy
Nevada's economy is fragile due to our reliance on tourism. We need to diversify the industries in our state to better protect our economy from nationwide economic downturns.

As someone who has predominately worked in the hourly wage end of the economy, I take this issue very seriously. Consumers pay the cost of the regulations that stifle competition and innovation, and those hit the hardest are at the bottom end of the wage scale. Barriers to meaningful employment, such as unreasonable occupational license requirements and protectionist regulations do need to go. Every Nevadan deserves the right to use their skills to the best of their ability in order to succeed, and our state government needs to stay out of the way.

As I discuss further in the section on taxes and the budget, I am not optimistic about the our immediate economic future due to the short-sighted tariffs and spending that have recently passed through Congress. I worry that Nevada may feel the effects of these policies even before the election. These policies are the results of the Democrats and Republicans in power. Join me in sending a clear message to the rest of the country that we are not going to let politics as usual get in the way to our right to economic freedom.
Drugs
The War on Drugs has been a failure, and has caused more problems than it has solved.

As someone who has worked in the prison system treating addicts, I can tell you firsthand how terrible it is to be addicted to a substance, and to have that substance control your life and actions. I will advocate for Nevada to adopt the Portuguese model for drug addiction treatment. In 2001, Portugal decriminalized drugs. While drug dealers were still subject to criminal penalties, anyone caught with less than a 10-day supply were evaluated for treatment programs. The result was a significant drop in new HIV cases, drug deaths, drug use among teens, homicide, and the number of cases overloading the criminal justice system. Nevada needs to look at these results and find a better way than incarceration. The prison system should be reserved for violent offenders, not for non-violent drug addicts. Possession and use are health problems, and need to be treated as such. Treatment is much less costly than incarceration, and much more effective. Let's admit the War on Drugs has not helped the problem, and look for more novel solutions to the problem of addiction in Nevada.
Guns
There are few issues as polarizing as gun rights and gun control these days. The high profile shootings that have dominated the news have been truly heartbreaking, and I can't imagine that anyone would be in favor of allowing more events like these to occur.

I do not own guns, nor am I a member of the NRA. I am a proponent of the rights guaranteed by the Constitution. First thing to note is this problem is media fueled. Violent crime is the lowest it’s been since the 1950’s. Mass shootings are the lowest they’ve been in over 20 years. The ongoing problem I see, and this is the root cause to mass violence, is the continued dehumanizing of each other. Neither side are actually addressing the root cause of these occurrences, rather they are just digging their heels into their position and creating further division among our citizens. Are we discussing safety? No. Are we discussing how we allow ourselves to dehumanize one another on the basis of lines drawn in the sand over political, social, or cultural differences? No. We live in a society where people feel entitled to hurl insults, bottles, and garbage out of the window of moving vehicles at pedestrians wearing another team's jersey. We live in a society where people seem to think it is acceptable to punch another person over their political beliefs. We live in a society that is fettered by frustrating bureaucracy. Despite all these examples, violent crime, including mass shootings, have been decreasing, not increasing. The question is less about how to fix gun ownership than it is how to maintain and enhance the downward trajectory of violent crime. I’d start with how we treat each other. Stop warring over differences and instead celebrate commonality. No one on either side wants mass shootings. We can start there.

I am not in favor of depriving law-abiding citizens of their Constitutional rights, least of all without due process. The conversation we need to be having to get to the root of the issue and preventing further tragedies is about why we let these differences define us in anger, and dehumanize one another. We could just as easily be using our similarities to define us in liberty, and humanize one another. The answer is not in restrictions but in community building. The partisanship we are experiencing in this debate is only going to make the problem worse. I want everyone to come together to find a solution, rather than use a tragedy for political clout. Let's find solutions as a community, rather than work towards more animosity and violence.  
Education
Like everyone else, I want a higher quality of education for our children. 51st in the nation is absolutely unacceptable.

I believe in better access to quality education for our children and citizens. All funds that are designated for education, need to be spent efficiently on education. I believe that when we look at how our money is being spent, we will find significant waste that can be better used to improve the quality of education. Portions of these wasteful expenditures can also be used to provide stronger incentives to our teachers, who so often sacrifice their raises to fix the school system.

On a personal note, prior to my move to Nevada, I was a single father. I made the difficult decision to leave my daughter with my parents while I got everything together to move her out. After accessing the school system here, I had to make the heartbreaking decision to have her stay in Massachusetts. I could not accept 51st in the union for my child, and I do not expect the parents and children of Nevada to accept that, either. I plan to look how the top states have succeeded, and adapt their successes to Nevada's needs.

Our public schools should be held to the standards set by the parents, teachers, and students themselves, rather than a bureaucracy. The money in the education system needs to be completely transparent. School choice, while controversial, is also important. I would like to revisit this issue. Poor families should not be forced to send their children to sub-standard schools simply because of where they can afford to live when we can provide them another option. I believe Nevada has the innovative spirit required to solve the budget issues we see in the school system, and improve the quality and effectiveness of our educational system. Like every other issue that faces Nevada, there is no reason why we cannot work together to solve our education issues.
Immigration
Nevada has an international economy, driven by residents and guests from all over the world. Nevadans enjoy an unrivaled landscape of culture and cuisines that make us a world class destination for immigrants and migrants from both within the US and outside of our borders. The legality of immigration is a Federal issue, however there are a few areas of improvement that I think Nevada can help work on.

As a large portion of the Nevada economy comes from tourism, I would like to help lift barriers to tourist visas. Family is important, and our residents who have joined our community from other parts of the world should be able to receive visits from their families. The economic benefits to our economy is an added bonus. Additionally, I stand in strong support to our Samoan friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers, who have been without their birthright 14th Amendment protections for 118 years. As governor, I would fight for the Insular Cases to be overturned, and all individuals born in American Samoa to be granted full citizenship, including the right to vote and run for office. While we wait for the Federal government to finally do the right thing, I will give Samoans who are classified as US Nationals every citizenship right in my power to grant.