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Primary Recommendation: Nevada U.S. Senate Race

(Chuck Muth) – I remain an Election Day voter, though I know many of you are choosing to vote early or by mail.  And mail ballots are already starting to hit mailboxes.

So I’ll try to get some info out on key races sooner rather than later this time around.

I usually get requests for recommendations for down-ballot and judicial races, but I’m getting a surprising number of requests on the GOP’s primary for U.S. Senate.

This is a critical race.  Which party controls the Senate after November could well be decided by who wins Nevada.  Things are that tight in DC.  As such, the main thing we should consider is which Republican has the best chance to defeat incumbent Democrat Sen. Jacky Rosen.

As the Buckley Rule advises, nominate the most conservative candidate who can WIN.

That said, it’s my opinion that Tony Grady is the best qualified candidate for the job.  He has 20 years’ experience as not just a pilot in the Air Force, but as an Air Force TEST PILOT.  He then followed that up with a 20-year career as a pilot in the private sector for FedEx.

He also has a campaign under his belt, winning 13 out of Nevada’s 17 counties in his first run for office in 2022 in the GOP primary for lieutenant governor.

But as I teach in my campaign training classes, it’s not the best candidate who wins, but the best campaign.  And unfortunately Tony’s campaign for U.S. Senate this year hasn’t caught fire.  He just wasn’t able to raise the money necessary to be competitive.

There are other candidates on the primary ballot – such as Stephanie Phillips – who are nice people but, frankly, have no business running for this seat.  No experience, no money, no groundswell of widespread support. They should have run for a state legislative seat or a local office.

Which leaves two candidates with a realistic shot at winning the nomination on June 11: Sam Brown and Jeff Gunter.

Brown has run before and lost.  However, he’s demonstrated an impressive ability to raise money nationally.  Millions for this race.

And while he ran as an “outsider” in 2022 for the U.S. Senate against Adam Laxalt, this time around he’s Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s and the GOP establishment’s pick.

Gunter is running for the first time.  Personally, I would have preferred that he run for a lower-level office, but it is what it is.  He’s a former ambassador to Iceland under President Trump and is able to self-fund his campaign.

Brown has much higher name recognition from his 2022 campaign, but that campaign wasn’t all that impressive.  He has a terrific story to tell about almost being killed by an IED explosion in Afghanistan, but his candidacy was far less inspiring.  Low-energy.

And as many readers have emailed me, they know and appreciate Brown’s service and sacrifice to defending the nation, but what he stands for and what he’d actually do as a senator are open questions.

Would he fight like a honey badger or go-along-to-get-along if elected?

Gunter, on the other hand, is a whirling dervish.  Meet him once and you’ll know there’s a real fire burning in his belly.  He’s no shrinking violet by any stretch and is campaigning as “110 percent” behind Donald Trump and MAGA (“Make America Great Again”).

As a longtime GOP leader in Nevada texted me yesterday, “Gunter would rip Rosen apart while Brown cannot speak beyond his horrible experience. Empty suit.”

As I told Gunter last summer when we first met, his only real path to victory probably depends on winning Trump’s endorsement in the race – which he believes is possible but hasn’t come yet.

In fact, I think one recent Trump endorsement came just a day or two before Election Day – and the clock here is ticking.

With or without Trump’s endorsement, the race is really a two-man race and there are still a LOT of open questions about both candidates. The two should debate, one-on-one at least once – preferably more – over the next couple of weeks.

Gunter has a good case to make as the candidate with the best chance to beat Rosen. Both are Jewish, and Israel’s war with Hamas is a huge national security issue.

You get the sense that Gunter would pound Rosen into the ground over this issue, but get the sense that Brown would lightly dust her with a feather.

And while Brown badgered Laxalt relentlessly to debate in 2022, he’s been trying to imitate Trump by refusing to debate his Republican primary opponents, blowing off every invitation.

As a reminder, here’s what Brown said in a video in March 2022…

“I’m Sam Brown and Adam Laxalt is afraid to get in the arena with me in front of you. This is the most important U.S. Senate race in the country and leaders are not afraid of a fight. I want a one-on-one prime time debate in front of Nevada voters.  Adam has rejected that. … Nevadans deserve better.  Nevadans deserve leadership.”

Yeah, this bothers me. Sam Brown is no Donald Trump.  And if he refuses to debate Gunter, that also makes him a world-class hypocrite.

And he NEEDS to debate in the primary, if for no other reason than to toughen him up for the general election if he becomes the GOP nominee.

I want a fighter, not a crown prince anointed by the DC establishment.  Just as Laxalt agreed to debate Brown in 2022, Brown should debate Gunter at least once in 2024.  There’s simply no excuse not to.

He owes it to Republican primary voters.

And while Brown remains the likely nominee whether he debates or not, my Election Day vote will likely go to Gunter – with or without Trump’s endorsement – if Brown refuses to face Gunter one-on-one, face-to-face.

It’s the least he can do if he wants to represent me in such an important seat, just as he said about Laxalt in 2022.

If you agree and want to see a Brown-Gunter debate, you can shoot an email to the Brown campaign at

As the lottery people constantly remind us, you gotta play to win.


This blog/website is written and paid for by…me, Chuck Muth, a United States citizen. I publish my opinions under the rights afforded me by the Creator and the First Amendment to the United States Constitution as adopted by our Founding Fathers on September 17, 1787 at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania without registering with any government agency or filling out any freaking reports. And anyone who doesn’t like it can take it up with George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin and John Adams the next time you run into each other.

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