Nevada’s GOP gubernatorial candidates oppose new gun laws


AP Photo/John Locher, Pool

Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo, left, motions beside former U.S. Senator Dean Heller laugh before a Republican primary debate for Nevada governor Wednesday, May 25, 2022, in Las Vegas.

All five candidates at a Republican gubernatorial debate in Nevada said they would oppose any new gun-ownership restrictions in the wake of the Texas school shooting.

Front-runner Joe Lombardo, head of the Las Vegas police department who helped lead the investigation into the 2017 mass shooting on the Las Vegas Strip, said Wednesday night he differed from the others in that he does not advocate a constitutional right to carry a concealed weapon.

But each said repeatedly at the hour-long debate in Las Vegas that the latest tragedy in Texas is more about a lack of mental health resources than gun regulations.

“We have enough gun laws,” said Reno attorney Joey Gilbert, who wants to end a ban on concealed weapons at Nevada schools and colleges. “These always seem to happen in gun-free zones.”

Former U.S. Sen. Dean Heller, who’s making a late bid to overtake Lombardo in the GOP’s June 14 primary and face Democrat Gov. Steve Sisolak in November, said he wouldn’t support any new restrictions on Nevadans’ right to carry a gun, concealed or otherwise.

“I think we have proven in Chicago and New York City that excessive tax or gun laws do not work. I don’t want to stand here ... and negotiate away our Second Amendment rights here in the state of Nevada,” Heller said.

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