Exclusive: Harris to visit East Las Vegas to kick off Nevada early voting
Vice President Kamala Harris will come to East Las Vegas on Jan. 27 for the first day of early voting for the state's presidential primary, marking the Biden-Harris campaign’s first major campaign event in the battleground state in 2024.
Both Harris and President Joe Biden have made visits to Southern Nevada in recent months — Harris as recently as early January, to speak to the Culinary Union — in their official capacity. But Harris’ visit this January will be a campaign event, signifying the importance of the Silver State, and its diverse electorate, to their re-election ambitions.
Biden for Nevada campaign manager Shelby Wiltz said in a statement that “we know Nevada will once again be a critical state for Democrats in November.”
With early voting beginning Jan. 27, Nevada is the second state — behind South Carolina — in which voters will be able to vote for Biden and Harris in the primary. (Biden is not on the ballot in New Hampshire for its Jan. 23 primary because of the national party’s calendar dispute with the state.) Though Biden should cruise to victory — facing a plethora of longshot candidates, wellness guru and 2020 candidate Marianne Williamson and the “None of these candidates” option mandated by state law — Harris’ visit is nonetheless intended to gin up enthusiasm for the incumbent.
Early voting will run from Jan. 27 to Feb. 2, and Election Day is Feb. 6.
Though it only has six electoral votes, Nevada has proven to be a critical part of both parties’ electoral maps in recent elections and the site of narrow victories. Biden won the state in 2020 by just over two percentage points, a nearly identical margin to Hillary Clinton’s victory in 2016. In 2022, Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto’s (D-NV) Senate re-election was the closest race in the country, with the Democrat eking out a victory by less than one percentage point.
With Biden’s approval rating continually underwater in Nevada — an October New York Times / Siena College poll found him at 36 percent approval in the state — the campaign is banking on a blitz of paid media, experienced campaign staff in the state and early engagement through visits like Harris’ to keep Nevada in the Democrats’ win column.