“You don’t win elections by moderating or changing your views to cater to certain identity politics,” said Danny Tarkanian, who is challenging incumbent Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) in this year’s Nevada Republican senatorial primary.
Tarkanian’s comments came during a SiriusXM Breitbart News Sunday interview with Breitbart News’s Washington Political Editor Matthew Boyle and Deputy Political Editor Amanda House.
“When you’re talking about my race with Dean Heller and I, the big difference is this: Dean Heller thinks you win a general election by catering to moderates and soft Democrats, and if you’re nice enough to them, if you vote their way, that you’ll get them to vote for you in a general election and you’ll win,” said Tarkanian.
“I believe very strongly, as Donald Trump has shown in 2016, you don’t win elections by moderating or changing your views to cater to certain identity politics,” added Tarkanian. “You win elections by motivating your base and standing upon what you believe on and the principles of what made our country so great.”
Tarkanian framed himself as more aligned with and supportive of President Donald Trump’s “America First” vision than Heller:
There’s a revolution going on in our country right now as long as we can keep it fueled and motivated and have the right candidates running. America First, people in America want us to take care of Americans first. We want to provide for the best trade deals where American business are getting the best deals. We want to make sure all Americans are getting jobs. We want to increase the prosperity of American before we go overseas. We don’t want to nation build and go overseas and spend trillions of dollars on military stuff when our veterans here in the United States aren’t being provided for. You articulate that message, you’re going to get those people to vote for you and you’ll win the general election because that is what the vast majority of Americans want.
Hostility to Trump is a liability in pursuit of grassroots Republican support, said Tarkanian, describing Heller as a “Never Trump” figure. He pointed to former Rep. Joe Heck’s (R-NV) 2016 general electoral defeat in pursuit of the Senate seat vacated by Harry Reid’s retirement as illustrative of his argument. He contrasted Heller’s hostility to Trump with his own ongoing support for the president’s “America First” policies:
In the last election, Joe Heck, who was a brigadier general and a doctor who did not flip-flop on issues, was winning in all the polls until he came out and told Nevada voters, “I don’t support Donald Trump.” He lost that race because he repudiated Donald Trump.
Well, Dean Heller was one of the first and most public Never-Trumpers in Nevada. Why would anybody think he can win when Joe Heck couldn’t win? People in Nevada like what Donald Trump has done with the America First policies. They’re going to vote for someone who supports those policies, and not just the easy ones — not the ones where everybody on the Republican side votes for it, like a tax reform — but ones that require tough votes like Obamacare, when you got to stand up to the mainstream media.”
Boyle noted Keller’s absence in vocally supporting Trump’s political vision: “I find it very odd that Dean Heller isn’t out there fighting aggressively for the president’s agenda.”
“Dean Heller’s whole career is to salvage his position in the Senate,” said Tarkanian. “He’s a big advocate for providing amnesty to the DACA recipients and the chain migration that goes along with it.”
Democrats prioritize the interests of foreigners illegally in the country over American citizens, said Tarkanian, pointing to broad Senate Democrat opposition to Friday’s continuing resolution and the subsequent “government shutdown.”
“The Democrats shut down the government because the Republicans wouldn’t grant amnesty to the DREAMers, which are the kids of illegal immigrants who came to our country,” said Tarkanian. “They would rather the military note get funded, they would rather we not take care of people in our country first and foremost because we won’t grant amnesty to illegal immigrants. This is what’s become of the Democrat Party.”
Breitbart News Sunday airs Sunday on SiriusXM’s Patriot channel 125 from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Eastern (4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Pacific).
Follow Robert Kraychik on Twitter @rkraychik.