LAS VEGAS -- The candidates for the Republican ticket for the 4th Congressional District may have the same party affiliation, but they come from very different backgrounds.
Cresent Hardy is a native Nevadan from the Virgin Valley, while Niger Innis is a native New Yorker from Harlem.
Hardy is a state assemblyman and business man. Innis is a civil rights activist, who resigned from the Congress of Racial Equality so he could enter the race.
They are different, but many of their views seem very similar.
Hardy and Innis want to face off against democrat and U.S. Representative Stephen Horsford, who is vying for his second term in Congress. But first, they need to win the June 10 Republican primary. If elected, both say working to improve the economy is at the top of their list.
“The centerpiece of this campaign, the theme of this campaign is reviving the American dream by freeing up small businesses,” Innis said.
“You have to give the security to the employer to make sure that he has the ability and the courage to go ahead and continue to be that employer and expand his business or create new ones,” Hardy said.
Both men say they would repeal the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare. They are both uneasy about President Barack Obama's announcement this week about removing troops from Afghanistan, because they question whether it is wise to be so open.
On the topic of Cliven Bundy, even after the cattle rancher's controversial comments about African Americans, Innis has defended him. Hardy, who grew up with Bundy, says he is still in touch with him.
Both candidates insist the cattle battle isn't about Bundy, but rather the federal government owning too much land in Nevada. They say the state should be in charge of land.
“This is a win-win scenario. Nevada gets more of our land back. We have more productivity, more jobs, more businesses, that is more tax revenue for the federal government, that is more tax revenue for our schools, that is more tax revenue for our infrastructure,” Innis said.
“The issue has always been about the overreach of government trying to take away our First Amendment rights to protest, closing down what is our public lands to remove the cattle,” Hardy said.
As for another controversial issue, the candidates agree on same-sex marriage.
“I believe that marriage is between one man and one woman at one time,” Innis said.
“I will always oppose gay marriage,” Hardy said.
After last week's shooting at U.C. Santa Barbara, the subject of gun control is at the top of many people’s agendas. A father of one of the victims is calling for tighter gun laws, but both men say they stand behind the Second Amendment.
“Second Amendment does not extend to those that are mentally unstable. The Second Amendment does not extend to criminals, but the Second Amendment for decent Americans, Second Amendment rights of decent Americans should not be infringed upon because of the acts of crazy people,” Innis said.
“There is no room for gun control. I don't think the gun has killed anybody. The individual, mental health issues is where we need to focus on,” Hardy said.
Both candidates have had financial troubles. Innis admits he has personal debt to pay off and is working to resolve that. Hardy admits his business filed for bankruptcy, but he says that is being resolved. He says his business is paying off debts as well.
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