Recent Federal Elections Commission (FEC) candidate reports, reflect a primary cycle heating up with the promise of a battleground race in Nevada’s Congressional District 4. Currently, candidates running on the Democratic ticket include Susie Lee, the only non-politician, State Senator Ruben Kihuen, and former State Assemblymen John Oceguera and Lucy Flores.
“In 1975, Congress created the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to administer and enforce the Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA) - the statute that governs the financing of federal elections. The duties of the FEC, which is an independent regulatory agency, are to disclose campaign finance information, to enforce the provisions of the law such as the limits and prohibitions on contributions, and to oversee the public funding of Presidential elections.” (www.fec.gov)
FEC reports through September 30, 2015 put Susie Lee at the front of the pack with total receipts of $664,745, operating expenditures $91,603, and $572,977 cash on hand. Ruben Kihuen comes in next at $364,972, spent $70,334, with $299,216 cash on hand. John Oceguera and Lucy Flores were very close in their fundraising efforts totaling $180,844 and $181,387 respectively. However, Oceguera has only spent $35,287 leaving him $145,541 cash on hand, and Lucy Flores outspending the pack at $102,494 leaving her with $73,543 cash on hand.
Although we have a long way to go, operating expenses indicate we’ll likely have a three person race in the June 2016 primary election. Although the district includes rural populations, this race can be decided in Clark County. The large African American voting eligible population and high voter turnout makes the Black electorate a strategically important interest group, although often marginalized during election season.
It is important that each of these candidates answer the hard questions and share their position on the issues important to the Black community. With the high number of registered Democrats in the district it should be an easy seat to take back, but candidates have to give their voters a reason to get out and vote. The community can learn more about these candidates at the very first Congressional District 4 Primary Debate on November 16, 2015 at 6:00 p.m. hosted by the Clark County Black Caucus, NAACP, The Minister’s Alliance, inside the Las Vegas City Council Chambers at City Hall moderated by Councilman Ricki Barlow. Candidates confirmed to attend include Susie Lee, Ruben Kihuen, and John Oceguera. Lucy Flores declined the invitation. This event is open to the public and will allow time to meet and mingle with the candidates.
For more information about the upcoming debate visit www.CCBlackCaucus.com.
Yvette Williams is a community advocate and Chair/Founder of the Clark County Black Caucus, a non-partisan community organization driven 100% by volunteer members registered to vote. Follow her Blog at www.YvetteBWilliams.com and on twitter @YvetteBWilliams or contact her at ClarkCountyBlackCaucus@gmail.com .