Sisolak appointee faces long-time officeholder in lieutenant governor race

By: - October 17, 2022 5:42 am

Lisa Cano Burkhead, Stavros Anthony

In Nevada, the lieutenant governor’s position is viewed as “symbolic” and is only as powerful as the governor decides.

The lieutenant governor’s responsibilities include serving as the vice chair of the Department of Transportation, chair of the state Commission on Tourism and a member of several other committees and boards, as well as breaking a tie in the (odd-numbered) state Senate. But by far the job’s most significant – albeit only potential – duty is being first in line of succession if the governor is unable to serve due to death, disqualification or resignation.

Democrat Lisa Cano Burkhead and Republican Stavros Anthony are the two main candidates for office. Cano Burkhead and Anthony beat a combined nine other candidates in the June primaries.

Bill Hoge, from the Independent American Party, Javi Tachiquin, from the Libertarian party, and Trey Delap, a nonpartisan, are also on the ballot. 

Lisa Cano Burkhead

Cano Burkhead has served as the state’s 36th lieutenant governor since December 2021, when Gov. Steve Sisolak appointed her to replace Kate Marshall, who resigned to take a job in the Biden White House. Cano Burkhead was previously an educator in Southern Nevada for over 25 years.

 “I come out of the world of education, I’m a first-generation Latina American, the first ever to be in this role as lieutenant governor,” said Cano Burkhead, who still substitute teaches in Clark County.  

Cano Burkhead’s parents immigrated to the U.S. from Argentina in 1965, and both of them worked in the Las Vegas hospitality industry — her father as a blackjack dealer and her mother as a seamstress at the Las Vegas Hilton, according to her campaign website. 

“This platform is bigger than me,” she said. “My mom was a seamstress working with her hands, never once complaining and always instilling in us kids the importance of giving back to your community [and] being grateful for the opportunities we have in our home state of Nevada.” 

Overseeing the newly created Office of Small Business Advocacy, established through Assembly Bill 184, Cano Burkhead aims to help businesses grow by streamlining the process for licensing and making state services accessible in multiple languages. 

She supports Nevada’s early voting and mail-in voting, in deep contrast to Anthony, who told the Nevada Globe that his 2020 election loss in a race for a Clark County Commission seat was because the election was stolen from him and “today’s elections can be easily stolen.” 

“He is an election denier, we couldn’t be more opposite,” she said of her opponent. “As someone who has dedicated their whole life to education and teaching kids critical thinking skills, it’s been really frightening to watch adult leaders that are not using those critical thinking skills.” 

Cano Burkhead supports abortion rights and said protecting those rights is especially important after the Dobbs V Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision overturned the nearly 50-year precedent set by Roe v. Wade. 

“As a mother of three daughters, I find it ludicrous that my daughters will potentially have less rights than I did,” she said. “We need to pay attention to this election and make sure we are voting for and electing the right candidates who are going to work really hard to protect the rights of women and women’s health care.” 

Cano Burkhead said she supports Sisolak’s position, declared in his campaign ads, that he will say no to new taxes. 

Her endorsements include the Culinary Union, the Nevada AFL-CIO, Planned Parenthood Votes Nevada, Humans Rights Campaign, multiple law enforcement agencies, Asian American Action Fund and Latino Victory.

Stavros Anthony

Anthony, who grew up in suburban Detroit before moving to Nevada after college, did not grant an interview. According to his campaign materials, he is running on a “law and order” platform. 

He represented Ward 4 on the Las Vegas City Council since 2009. He previously served on the Nevada System of Higher Education’s Board of Regents where he unsuccessfully lobbied to ban rap music on college campuses in 2006. 

Anthony was a police officer and captain with the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police for nearly 30 years. He lost his bid to join the Clark County Commission in 2020 by only 15 of the 150,000 votes cast. 

In the same April interview with the Nevada Globe when he said “the election was stolen from me in 2020,” he also alleged that Nevada Democratic lawmakers had made it easier to “cheat” by allowing universal mail-in voting, ballot collecting – or “harvesting,” as Republicans refer to it, and enacting automatic voting registration at the DMV. 

Anthony said that he would let voters decide whether or not to change the state’s existing abortion law in a question from KTVN 2 News.

Anthony’s endorsements include the Las Vegas Chamber, the Nevada State Republican Party, Gun Owners of America, and the Nevada Veterans Association.

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Camalot Todd
Camalot Todd

An award-winning, investigative and enterprise reporter, Camalot Todd has over seven years experience in print, digital, radio and TV journalism. She covered mental and behavioral health in New York for Spectrum News 1 Buffalo through the national service program, Report For America, where she won the Mental Health Advocates of WNY Advocacy Award in 2020 for her coverage on mental health stigma. She also served as an inaugural member of the Report For America Corps Advisory Board Member, 2021-2022. Previously, she reported on community issues in Las Vegas, including a long-term project on underage sex trafficking, for the Las Vegas Sun and its sister publication, Las Vegas Weekly. For the Sun, she wrote a pathbreaking investigative piece called, “Children on the Cusp: The transition from foster care to adulthood is leaving some behind.” The piece won the Nevada Press Association best investigative story of the year and named Camalot the Best Community Reporter of 2017. She also worked as a reporter for KUNV radio and is a graduate of University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Camalot was selected for National Press Foundation Opioid and Addiction Fellow 2021 and led the Syracuse Press Club's Journalism Lab as an educator from 2021-2022.