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Dark Clouds Gathering over Nevada State Senate Republicans


Now that the dust has settled from the June 12 primaries, let’s take a sobering look at the prospects for Republicans in the Nevada State Senate.  And it ain’t pretty.

Currently the Democrats enjoy a 12-9 advantage.

Republicans will hold SD-12 (Joe Hardy), SD-14 (Ira Hansen to replace Don Gustavson), SD-16 (Ben Kieckhefer) and SD-17 (James Settelmeyer).

Democrats will hold SD-2 (Mo Dennis) and SD-21 (James Ohrenschall to replace Mark Manendo).

Republicans are considered favored to hold SD-20 (Assemblyman Keith Pickard to replace “Tax Hike Mike” Roberson), but this is not a “lock” – especially with a Libertarian candidate on the general election ballot.

There are 28,210 registered Democrats, 27,781 registered Republicans and 17,181 registered “non-partisans,” with another 4,800 “others.”  As a general rule of thumb, non-partisans usually break around 60-40 in favor of the GOP in non-presidential elections.

SD-8 and SD-9 are toss-ups.  Both parties have solid candidates in both races.

SD-8 is currently represented by Patricia Farley – who was elected four years ago as a Republican but switched to “non-partisan” and caucused with the Democrats in the 2017 session.

The Democrat candidate is former Assemblywoman Marilyn Dondero Loop.  The Republican candidate is former Assemblywoman Valerie Weber.  So both have legislative AND campaign experience and should be able to raise sufficient money.

There are 25,886 registered Democrats, 25,409 registered Republicans and 15,026 registered non-partisans with another 4,000 or so voters registered with third parties.

Overall I would say this seat leans Republican – especially since a third “independent” candidate will be on the general election ballot who has previously run as a Democrat.  But this one could easily go either way at this point.

SD-9 is currently vacant after Republican Becky Harris was appointed to the Gaming Control Board.

The Democrat candidate is Melanie Scheible.  I don’t know anything about her, but she won a four-candidate primary with 70% of the vote.  The Republican candidate is Tiffany Jones, a small businesswoman who owns a bake shop and lost an Assembly race in 2016.

There is no third-party candidate in this race.

There are 31,616 registered Democrats, 25,428 registered Republicans and 20,292 registered “non-partisans, plus a bit less than 5,000 “others.”

I would say this seat leans Democrat.

Overall, Republicans have ZERO chance to win back the majority.  Their best-case scenario is to hold what they have and pick up SD-8, which would still leave them in an 11-10 minority.

On the other hand, it’s very possible for the Democrats to hold SD-8 and win SD-9 and SD-20…which would give them a veto-proof 14-7 super-majority.

Truly frightening.  Hello, “sanctuary state”!

The only “good” news is that compared to the boneheads in the Republican State Assembly, Senate Republicans are a model of efficiency and political genius.

We’re doomed.

(Mr. Muth is president of and publisher of  He blogs at  His opinions are his own.)


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