Looking at the U.S. midterms from the heart of the States

BY PAUL STRICKLAND

Special to the News

RENO, NEV. — Lines stretched back about 200 metres and even part-way up entrance steps Saturday for the first day of an advance poll held in Old Town Mall in south-central Reno. That seemed to betoken considerable interest in the mid-term elections for which the official voting day is Nov. 6.

Sunday, however, the lines at the Old Town Mall had reduced considerably, with no delays currently for those choosing to vote in the advance poll.
 
Sheila Leslie, liberal columnist for the weekly Reno News and Review, wrote in the most recent issue that she would never vote for a Republican again, even for an officially non-partisan post like Washoe County Assessor, no matter if she knew he might be leading an exemplary life volunteering in the community. After U.S. President Donald  Trump’s performance during his first two years in office, and  particularly after the Brett Kavanaugh hearings, Leslie said it was now impossible for her to vote for any Republican candidate, however moderate in his or her personal views.
 
In Western Nevada one academic worries the evident instability in the Trump administration means reckless foreign policy decisions could lead inadvertently to war, and said the situation could be compared to the period between the turn of the last century and the start of the First World War.
 
On KOH Radio in Reno, Rush Limbaugh in his syndicated Fox network program Sunday said Democrats seek only sabotage of the Republican Party and in this pursuit will stop at nothing — such as by destroying the good name of a distinguished jurist like Kavanaugh during confirmation committee hearings. A Fox radio commentator whose statements were broadcast from a Bend, Ore., radio station Thursday afternoon, contended Democrats’ strategy of seeking a majority in the House of Representatives solely to have the basis for beginning impeachment proceedings was tantamount to advocating overthrow of the government.
 
Initiatives on the ballot in Oregon call for further restricting the ability of state legislators to raise taxes, and one initiative measure on the Nevada ballot would deregulate the electrical power industry. Opponents of this proposed measure are trying to remind voters of how deregulation of electricity in California resulted in the Enron fiasco in that state.
 
A large billboard sign along the I-5 just southwest of Tacoma carried the message: “On Nov. 6 go to the polls and tell Donald Trump he’s FIRED!” Trump is not up for re-election until 2020, but opponents hope this fall’s mid-term elections results will produce majorities for them in both the U.S. House of Representatives and in the Senate.