Do Virginia & New Jersey election results impact Nevada 2022 elections?

Published: Nov. 5, 2021 at 5:58 PM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - “National pundits like to create drama because they all want to sell soap afterall.”

That is Professor Fred Lokken reacting to claims that the Virginia and New Jersey Gubernatorial election results foretell what will happen in the 2022 midterms.

But he says there are messages that came from this week’s election results. Messages like what a well-run campaign can do for a candidate. Good candidates make a difference, and mistakes in which the candidate could not recover will all have an impact—including voter turnout

“The democratic voter turn-out in New Jersey was terrible,” says Professor Lokken. “So, you get that apathy right? Everybody thinks your party is going to show up. So, it made the Republican look better. But voter turnout was way down in New Jersey,” he says.

Incumbent New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, a Democrat, barely won re-election this week.

Lokken says close alliances with former President Donald Trump weren’t needed for Virginia’s new Republican Governor Glenn Youngkin to win. That may be a message for candidates here in Nevada on the Republican side particularly those running for governor.

“Rather strong Trump candidates,” he says of the group of Republican candidates running for Nevada Governor. “First will Trump choose one at the expense of the others?” he asks. “That could cause problems because that could cause a bad blood situation,” says Lokken.

Lokken says Adam Laxalt’s campaign for U.S. Senate runs close to the former president’s philosophies. That strategy could work against Nevada U.S Senator Catherine Cortez Masto. But he adds Trump lost Nevada in 2020 and Laxalt headed the campaign to throw out results.

Lokken says in Nevada voters can register on the same day of the election. They can mail in their ballots. There are drop boxes. And that’s another lesson, he says, from this past week’s election results--high voter turnout doesn’t necessarily mean a bad thing for a Republican candidate.

“That just brings a very robust democracy to the polls,” says Lokken.

President Trump made several stops in Nevada to stump for himself and other Republican candidates in 2020. Will he do the same in 2022? Lokken says he wouldn’t be surprised if Trump made stops for candidate Laxalt.

But we will have to find out who Trump endorses in the Nevada gubernatorial race on the Republican ticket in June. And will that endorsement come before or after the primary?

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