There is one race that doesn't seem to be getting the attention that it needs around here on Daily Kos, and that is the Nevada Senate race between Congresswoman Shelley Berkley and Senator Dean Heller. Real Clear Politics currently gives Senator Heller a 5 point advantage, however it counts some crappy polls like Rasmussen from late July(which last gave Heller a 9 point lead. Translation: Heller only had a 3 point lead) and a Survey USA poll that assumed that more Latinos would vote for Heller rather than Berkley(this is laughable, and I will detail both of their stances on immigration policy later. Hint: Heller is a 14ther).
The new poll also showed Heller leading 47 percent to 37 percent among Hispanic voters, a result questioned by experts who were interviewed about the survey, and also a surprise to the pollster. A June poll by Latino Decisions, a consulting firm specializing on the Hispanic vote, calculated Berkley with a 53 percent to 30 percent lead over Heller among that population.Meanwhile the real polls(PPP (contains PDF) and others) have shown a statistical tie. This doesn't take into account that Nevada polls underestimate what the Nevada Democratic Party does with their ground game, and in 2010, many polls had Sharron Angle ahead of Harry Reid. Reid's internals told a different story, and those turned out to be right. We could be looking at a similar situation in 2012 since the good polls only show a nominal lead for Heller, and Berkley's internals show that she has a slight lead.
When we also look at Berkley and Heller have stood on some important issues, we can see that Shelley Berkley is a much better choice for Nevada than Senator Dean Heller.
Since Nevada's demographics are trending more Latino, let's examine Berkley and Heller on their immigration stances and record.
A Las Vegas Sunarticle from May also lists some interesting stances that Senator Heller has taken.
Heller, through his statements and votes in Congress, has consistently supported limiting or eliminating the ability to conduct government business in any language other than English. Heller has sponsored legislation to limit election ballots to English-only, to mandate that the Free Application for Federal Student Aid only be filled out in English and to make English the official national language. Heller also supported a bill to end birthright citizenship.(emphasis added mine)
Berkley in contrast, co-sponsered a bill back in 1999 that would have increased visas for the families of documented immigrants. Berkley also voted No on blocking the Attorney General from fighting anti-immigrant laws in several states. She also voted No on a bill that the ACLU opposed.
On Health Care and Medicare, it's simple: Berkley voted for Obamacare, Heller voted against it. Heller voted twice for the Paul Ryan Medicare Coupon Plan. Berkley on her issues page for Health Care supports drug re-importation and price negotiation.
On LGBT issues, Heller is just another Republican who is on the wrong side of history. He opposes marriage equality and he voted against DADT repeal. Shelley Berkley is a strong pro-LGBT candidate, who has gotten Human Rights Campaign's endorsement for Senate. Berkley voted to repeal DADT and has strong ties to ENDA(Employment Non-Discrimination Act)
We're all fighting for a better future, and this November, voters in Nevada have a choice between a pro-immigrant, pro-LGBT, pro-middle class candidate in Shelley Berkley or 14ther English-only anti-immigrant, anti-LGBT, anti-middle class candidate in Dean Heller. Yes, the choice is clear, and we have a chance towards real progress with Shelley Berkley, who has a real chance at winning a Senate seat this November, and thus helping to keep our firewall against Republican extremism.