The Nevada Appeal
John Wagner said he was so fed up with the Republican Party he switched to Independent American. And he’s running against Republican Cheryl Lau and Incumbent Democrat Bonnie Parnell in Assembly District 40 saying it’s time for a serious change.
“What I would like to do is change the way the state does business,” he said. “I would like to see the state run kind of like a business — zero based budgeting for every department.”
Wagner, who moved to Carson City from California after retiring, has been an advocate of putting a California-style Proposition 13 property tax cutting law in Nevada’s constitution. He was employed by Sony Corp.
He said the budget is obviously the big issue for the coming Legislature.
“We’re going to have to tighten our belt whether we like it or not,” he said. “To raise taxes now on individuals who are already hurting will hurt even more and to raise taxes on businesses may cause businesses to leave or close their doors.”
He said he supports the idea of eliminating some programs in state government but doesn’t favor a flat, across the board reduction. He said exactly what should be reduced or eliminated will have to be determined in committee hearings.
His second big issue, he said, is immigration. He called for an approach he said has been successful in Arizona: Cutting off as many benefits as possible for illegals and going after businesses that employ them. But he quickly said he doesn’t support attempts to deny, for example, emergency medical treatment to children of illegal immigrants.
“Without services and without jobs,” he said, “they’ll go home.”
He said Lau is incorrect when she claims to be the only one in the race who has signed the no new taxes pledge.
“I signed it well before she did,” he said.
Wagner was one of Ron Paul’s supporters until the abortive Nevada Republican Convention shut down to prevent them from taking over and packing the national convention delegation. He said afterward he was so disgusted with the party he was switching his registration to IAP. He said a number of other Paul supporters did the same.