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As Nevada's June 14 primary rounds corner, eyes are on CCSD board races

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Voting is underway for next week’s June 14 primary election, where voters will determine the fate of dozens of races and could determine the balance of power in Congress.

But how are Nevadans feeling as they head to the polls?

What are their top concerns?

And what does this primary vote tell us about the general election this fall?

Christina Ladam is an assistant professor of political science at the University of Nevada, Reno. Her research includes political discussion, women and politics and state and local politics.

She said in urban areas, Joey Gilbert isn't pulling as a GOP gubernatorial candidate, but he is in rurals. Ultimately, Sheriff Joe Lombardo is leading that race and is likely to face Gov. Steve Sisolak in November unless something changes between now and Tuesday.

"I think if we see candidates coming out with more messaging around the issue [of gun control], it could drive voting based on Nevadans having a bit more of a libertarian view towards guns," Ladam said. "So it's quite possible that will swing things right now. But based on the lead that Lombardo has, and that early voting has already begun. I don't see it shifting things too much."

But in Southern Nevada, voters are keeping an eye on the Clark County school board seats up this round.

Rocio Hernandez, a Nevada Independent reporter, said members of the community see the board's infighting as embarrassing, and that will affect their decisions in the polls.

"School boards … aren't always going to agree, but the fighting doesn't need to happen," she said.

What's top of mind for voters in the school board races? Violence, teacher shortages, pay, and trust, Hernandez says. 

"Trust in the school board to be making the right decisions for students. Students are still dealing with the impacts, both academic and mentally, from the pandemic and from the school closures," she said. "So I think one of the things that the voters want to see is a school board that's strong enough to help students in the district move forward from that and recover and more than anything, improve. Nevada has been ranking low on education, and people want to see a change. People want to see an improvement and people want to feel happy about the schools that they're sending their students to."

Still not sure who to vote for? Check out KNPR's voter guide

Christina Ladam, assistant professor of political science, University of Nevada, Reno;  Rocio Hernandez, education reporter, The Nevada Independent

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Paul serves as KNPR's producer and reporter in Northern Nevada. Based in Reno, Paul specializes in covering state government and the legislature.