As I began setting up my recorder and computer in her campaign office in Summerlin, NV, attorney April Becker, candidate for Congressional District 3, said, “Interviewing is not one of my favorite things to do. I have been very disappointed with other publications in the past. I thought the interview went well only to find that I would be misquoted and completely taken out of context. I now try to avoid those publications that have shown an outward bias. I always end my interviews with ‘please be fair.'”
With a little acknowledgement and reassurance of fairness, we began our interview.
Becker grew up in a large family in a little town in Southeast Texas. Her grandfather was the patriarch of the family. Having worked hard to provide, he promised to send his sons and grandsons to college. According to Becker, her grandfather believed that a college education wasn’t needed by the girls as they were destined to get married, have children and take care of the home. In order to make her way in the world, she chose Las Vegas, 30 years ago, to start a new life and pay her own way to attend UNLV.
She began her journey going to school and working as a cocktail waitress and a bartender. She got married, had a daughter, got divorced, and struggled. Holding back tears, Becker said, “There were nights that my daughter and I had dinner by candle light because I couldn’t afford the electric bill. Due to my life now, many people don’t realize that I know what it is like to struggle and to worry about having enough money to provide for my family. All of my life, I felt as though I wasn’t being listened to, but I soon realized that if I became a lawyer, people would listen.”
One example she gave was an experience with a home improvement store. After an installation gone wrong, the company ignored her following complaints. When her friend, who was a lawyer, called them to complain on her behalf, a new installation was granted immediately.
From that experience, Becker realized that people and companies listen to lawyers, so she enrolled in Boyd Law School at 36 years old–as a wife and mother of three children. She graduated at 39, and ten months later, while representing the family business, won her first case. “We were always told we needed to settle, but this case proved that cases are winnable. I like to be in court. I like to be in trial. Our family business is in commercial real estate and a majority of cases in that industry are settled. Again, I felt as though people weren’t listening to me, to us, and that case proved that people and companies will listen if a lawyer is involved. As a mother of three kids, I would take my eldest daughters to law school with me at night and make then do their homework. People told me that was a great experience for her– I think she would beg to differ, but I am glad I did it.”
When asked why she chose to get into politics and why she ran against Senate Majority leader Nicole Cannizzaro, Becker explained:
“I got really mad. Our family has always supported candidates with space in shopping centers, money donations, and supported Republicans. In 2015, the Republican majority passed the commerce tax–the largest tax hike in Nevada history. And I just thought, we can’t keep doing the same thing. Candidates make us promises and then they go to Carson City and they do the exact opposite of what they said they said they stood for. So, I looked at my husband and said, ‘one of us needs to run for office’ and, ultimately, I took the step in 2019 and announced my run for state senate. This was my first time ever running and I was told I could’t win because I was running against the Senate Majority Leader. But, I didn’t listen. I thought that was ridiculous because I knew I was more qualified. I was told I would have difficulty raising money, but I ended up raising nearly one million dollars. I was out-raised by four times that amount.
I had everything thrown at me my first time running– my opponent was the majority leader, Covid, I couldn’t knock on doors. So, I bought an ice cream truck in order to meet people. People didn’t want us knocking on doors. They were, understandably, scared. The ice cream truck was a big hit. I think that is what helped me do as well as I did in an eight-plus Democratic district. I won until I lost by a half-point two weeks later.”
When asked if she believed, like Stavros Anthony, that her election was stolen, Becker said:
“I lost by 631 votes. I never filed a lawsuit. I filed a writ of mandate. A writ of mandate is asking the court to make a lower public official perform a legally required duty that they aren’t performing. In my case, at that time, the Clark County Commissioners granted Stavros Anthony a new election. My district sat in that district, so I was asking for the same decision through the writ. More than 10 precincts in that district had more votes than registered voters.
But, the Nevada constitution requires the Legislature to preside over my complaint, and my opponent would have led that hearing. I would have lost and been responsible for legal fees, so I ended up withdrawing my complaint with the legislature.
I definitely think there were a lot of irregularities in my election. I watched the ballot harvesting–which was allowable during Covid due to the Governor’s emergency powers. The Democrats already had people on the ground ready to go and ballot harvest. They cheated–100%. They cheated. But, I think people have been cheating in elections for a long time. It was very disheartening what happened, and being someone who is a rule follower, I was very disappointed in how the county commissioners and courts handled my complaint.”
When I asked why she was running for Congress this time around, Becker stated:
“All I ever wanted was to help people. I do a ton of pro-bono work for that reason. I do a lot of things for people because I care. I saw the line up we had for this seat and I thought we were going to lose again–no offense to anyone. This is a winnable seat. I knew that the promises made by Biden and his administration, if he were to win, would be disastrous–and I was right. I felt like I had to do it. This administration has been a disaster with our border, Afghanistan, inflation– everything around us seems to be crumbling. I know I am doing the right thing.
I am giving it 100%. I talk to people every day. They are struggling. Our economy is in free fall and the Covid restrictions went too long and were too broad. I remember when the state of emergency went into effect, I went to look into the chapter and the statutes and found there was no end date. There was no definable end date! In Texas, we have hurricanes and tornadoes and the state of emergency would kind of define itself.
It was unbelievable that Governor Sisolak could declare a state of emergency and continue it for years. When you start reading laws and see how they contradict other laws, and how they are poorly written, and how the people who are putting these laws on the books don’t even think of the outcome of the words they are using…the election statutes are horrendous! They contradict each other. They are unreadable. I think that is why we have had a lot of problems.
But, that is why I am running for congress, I want to help. As a lawyer, I can help. I want to get our economy up and moving. I simply want to help people. The last few years, Nevadans haven’t had a voice in DC. The things we need as Nevadans are not being addressed and I want to change that.”
With regards to the top three issues Nevadans are facing, Becker didn’t hesitate:
“First, it’s the economy,” she said. “In our business and other businesses, our bars and restaurants aren’t fully staffed. We don’t have food delivery. Sometimes they don’t have food to deliver. Our economy is a huge issue.
It is also our security. Border security. Home security. Our crime rates have gone up and our national security is in shambles. When you see Afghanistan and Ukraine, the Biden administration’s answer is to print money and send it abroad.
Education is also big problem. We are seeing this problem in education everywhere. Nevada is near dead last. Money is not the answer. Money is not helping or solving the problem. I am a big proponent of splitting the Clark County School District up.
I think people are paying attention now because it has gotten to a point where they have to decide whether they are putting gas in their car or feeding their families. I think also the politicians who are making these decisions have no idea how families are struggling. They are out of touch. They double down on the policies instead of reviewing them. This is really frustrating to me. What I see is that the Democrat playbook goes out in the morning and they stick to a script, but they have no idea what they are saying.”
The Globe: The Democrats put forward a bill to give another 40 billion dollars to Ukraine, how would you vote on that?
April Becker: “I would have to read the bill. I think we have printed enough money this year. This is the problem. We cannot continue to spend money that we do not have.”
Susie Lee has been endorsed by climate justice organizations and has been a big proponent of solar energy. There has been a big push for solar in Nevada, although the technology uses million of gallons of water for construction and maintenance. What is your position on climate change, specifically solar energy?
“These ideas sound good but no one does research on cost. Water is such an issue here. This is very frustrating to me because politicians say things that people want to hear but have no idea what it costs when it’s utilized. I sometimes just roll my eyes. No one seems to really want to help the environment because if they did, they would look at all the costs associated with it–the cost of wildlife, water, and land. The electricity used and needed for electric cars and busses, the mines needed for battery materials, the water and land needed for solar. All of these resources have costs associated with them. How do you recycle windmills and solar panels? No one I have heard has had an environmentally-friendly answer to that.”
The latest issue is Roe V. Wade and how it will effect the women’s vote and the November election. What do you think will be the impact of this decision on the midterms if the leaked opinion is the final ruling of the court?
“First, the leak was disappointing. As an attorney, when I write my pleadings, I read them and write them over and over again. I argue with myself at times. Hopefully they do follow through and find out who the leaker was and I hope they are punished. I don’t think it is going to have that big of an effect here in Nevada because abortion is codified in law.
When people are sitting at their kitchen table they aren’t worried about where they are going to get their abortion. They are worried about how they are going to fill up their gas tanks; they are worried about if they are going to have a job; and, they are worried what type of of education their children are getting. This is what people are worried about. These are real life problems.
When they (Democrats) argue about a slippery slope with the repeal, they don’t understand the constitution or Bill of Rights. Any of those types of issues are protected under the 14th amendment. Roe V. Wade should be left to the states. I spent an entire semester studying Roe V. Wade and it was a decision made by judges who violated the separation of powers and made law. Whether you are pro-life or pro-choice, you should step back and understand that when judges overstep boundaries, our system doesn’t work properly. I don’t think this going to have any effect on my race or anyone’s race. It would have to be changed by the people of Nevada and is a beautiful example of how our government works.”
Let’s look at your race with Susie Lee, what are you seeing or hearing on the ground. We have been seeing numbers that show defections from the Democratic party by Democrats, Hispanics, women…”
Democrats are switching to the GOP. I heard this in 2020 and it continues. Anyone who is paying attention to what is going on–the gas lighting from this administration, knows the truth. The American people are not dumb. When they make the choice to pay attention, they are unhappy. The answer to that is to vote these people out. That is the only answer we have. I knew it would be bad under the Biden administration, but I didn’t know it would be this bad this fast. Hispanic voters and young people want to volunteer for my campaign. These are smart kids and smart people. I think they are insulted by the patronizing messages from the Democrats.”
What is Susie Lee’s biggest weakness and what is your biggest strength?
I think Susie Lee doesn’t care about people. I think she is in this job for the wrong reasons. In contrast, I care about the people who I am going to work for. That is my strongest asset. I care about making a difference. I think when you do something for the right reasons and when you are passionate about your convictions, and when you care about doing the right thing, things will work out. That has been my motivator for everything I have done my entire life. Going to law school, my pro bono work, my senate and congressional race…it is going to be me fighting for the people I work for.
I am annoyed by the 2000 page bills coming out of DC and the 100 page bills coming out of Carson City. I don’t think a majority of people who passed these bills read them, and I find that offensive. I think have my law degree and my background helps. I read these bills. I do know how certain words can be utilized. A law back ground helps in politics.”
Lastly, how is your fundraising going?
I have raised over a million dollars so far. It is a lot of work, but I know that you don’t want to get to the end of the finish line and not have the funds to fight back. It’s going very well and I know I can win this race. With the people behind me, I will win this race.”
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