Politics and Policy

Political news

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As the presidential candidate pool starts to thin after the Iowa caucuses, the nation is now looking to New Hampshire. And in just a few weeks, all eyes will be on Nevada.

Our News Director Michelle Billman talked with two local political scientists to hear their thoughts on which candidates will resonate in the Silver State.  They include Eric Herzik from the University of Nevada, Reno and Fred Lokken from Truckee Meadows Community College.

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A new Nevada law has revised how the state refers to car accidents, changing the word "accident" to "crash." Reno Public Radio's Michelle Billman explores why.

State officials are changing the verbage used in every Nevada law related to car crashes. 

"Really, the reason is to send a message that many car crashes are preventable," says Meg Ragonese, a spokeswoman for the Nevada Department of Transportation. 

She says 321 people died on Nevada roads last year.

New Law Will Introduce Electronic Sample Ballots

Feb 1, 2016
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New revisions to Nevada’s election laws that were passed last spring recently went into effect. Our contributor Luiza Vieira has details on one of the laws that grants voters more access to ballot information.

 

Registered voters can now receive sample ballots online or by email. Precious Hall is a political science professor at Truckee Meadows Community College and says the new law will increase voter education.

Julia Ritchey

With the Iowa caucuses behind them, presidential candidates must now turn their attention to the next few battleground states like New Hampshire and Nevada. In a nod to the importance of the rural vote, several candidates have made stops in Elko this election season. Reno Public Radio's Julia Ritchey sat down with veteran Elko Daily Free Press reporter Marianne McKown to learn more about the issues that matter most to these voters.  Below are shortened excerpts of their conversation.

A Local Take On Solitary Confinement For Minors

Feb 1, 2016
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President Barack Obama recently issued an executive order that bans the use of solitary confinement on juvenile offenders in federal prisons. Reno Public Radio’s Marcus Lavergne got a local expert’s take on this change. 

In most cases, juveniles locked in solitary confinement cells will experience limited contact and long periods without much natural light. This can be for days, weeks or even months.

Julia Ritchey

Former President Bill Clinton swung through Reno Friday night to campaign for his wife, Democratic contender Hillary Clinton. 

He spoke for more than hour to a crowd of about 500 people at the Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows.

Although never mentioning any other candidates by name, Clinton struck out at Republicans for what he called divisive politics.

"When they get done blaming Mexicans, Muslims and immigrants of all kinds, they blame President Obama," he said. 

Julia Ritchey

With less than a month until the Nevada caucus, Washoe County Democrats are holding training sessions to teach newcomers how it works. To demystify the process, our reporter Julia Ritchey attended a mock caucus earlier this week.  

About 50 people crowd into the Washoe County Democratic headquarters in Reno to learn how to caucus. But tonight, instead of pledging support for a candidate, they get to choose their preferred Muppet.

Volunteer: "Please go ahead and stand in the preference group of your choice..."

New Law Will Step Up Playtime In Day Care

Jan 14, 2016
Alexa Ard

Almost a third of children in Nevada between the ages of  four and five are overweight. To address this problem, state lawmakers have passed new regulations for child care centers. Our contributor Luiza Vieira has the story.

Alexa Ard

Gun deaths have topped motor vehicle deaths in more than twenty states, including Nevada. Reno Public Radio's Michelle Billman has the details.

In 2014, there were 429 people in Nevada who died from firearms compared to 319 people who were killed by motor vehicle incidents. That's according to a new report released from the Violence Policy Center, or VPC, which advocates for more gun control.

Alexa Ard

GOP frontrunner Donald Trump made his second appearance in Northern Nevada Sunday at a packed rally in downtown Reno. Our reporter Julia Ritchey was there and has more.

Billionaire Trump riled up the crowd of several thousand at the Reno Events Center but had his crosshairs squarely aimed on rival Texas Senator Ted Cruz, who's been rising in the polls.

"Is he a natural born citizen?" Trump asked the crowd. "Some people... I don't know. Honestly, I don't know. Who the hell knows?"

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