LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — During a weekend news conference, Republican U.S. Senate candidate Adam Laxalt slammed Democratic Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto for her support of President Joe Biden’s agenda.
Laxalt, who served as state attorney general from 2015 to 2019 and lost the last gubernatorial race to Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak, said Cortez Masto is partly responsible for Nevada’s worst-place ranking for unemployment.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics show Nevada with the highest unemployment rate for August with 7.7%, the last month with state-level data available.
“She stood with Governor Sisolak, who in turn stood with Gavin Newsom, and they had some of the worse pandemic policies and what did it result in? One and two of the highest unemployment,” Laxalt said.
Laxalt also said Cortez Masto did not do enough to keep Las Vegas’ tourism industry open during the first months of the pandemic. However, she is a federal official and those decisions were made at the state or county level.
“We did not need to be locked down. We did not need draconian measures,” Laxalt said.
Cortez Masto worked earlier this year to pass the American Rescue Plan, which included $1,400 stimulus checks for most Americans and $750 million in money to help states greatly impacted by the loss of tourists.
Laxalt also pressed Cortez Masto for her support of the president’s infrastructure and Build Back Better plans, saying they spend too much money and hurt the economy.
Cortez Masto voted to support the infrastructure plan, which economists predict will bring thousands of jobs to Nevada. A vote on the Build Back Better plan has not been scheduled, as Democrats infight over how much to spend.
“It’s unfortunate that they couldn’t pare this thing down and come up with conclusive or constructive steps to try to fix our infrastructure,” Laxalt said. “We’re sitting at the bottom here in Nevada. Everything that is coming down the pipe is making going back to work harder.”
A spokesman for Nevada Democratic Victory, the campaign wing of the state party, said Cortez Masto was doing the opposite of what Laxalt alleged.
“Sen. Cortez Masto worked tirelessly to pass the historic bipartisan infrastructure deal that will create thousands of jobs across Nevada,” Andy Orellana said. “Meanwhile, Adam Laxalt has dedicated his campaign to attacking that bill and the many good-paying jobs it would deliver across the state. Laxalt is a right-wing extremist focused only on pandering to Trump, and Nevadans will reject his job-killing agenda once again.”
Former President Trump has endorsed Laxalt in the race. Laxalt repeatedly said the 2020 election was rife with fraud, but no court nor election official from either party found the allegation to be credible.
The Republican primary is scheduled for June 2022.