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Nevada Republicans Tenuously Embrace Trump Candidacy

Alexa Ard

Donald Trump's path to the GOP presidential nomination is all but assured — and that's causing major headaches for Nevada Republicans hoping to win key races this year. 

In a candid exchange with reporters in Vegas, today, after Ted Cruz and John Kasich dropped out of the race, Nevada's Republican Senator Dean Heller says he's not sure he can vote for Trump.

Rindels: "Senator, are you committing to vote for Trump at this point?"

Heller: "No, what I'm committing is to voting against Hillary Clinton this November."

That was Associated Press reporter Michelle Rindels, who also asked Heller whether Trump could hurt down-ticket GOP candidates like Rep. Joe Heck, who's running for U.S. Senate.

"Yeah, it does have some impact who's on the top of the ticket," said Heller. "Some of the worst comments that I think Trump has made has affected the Latino and the Hispanic community in the southwest."

Joe Heck is likely to face off against Catherine Cortez Masto this fall in the high stakes race to fill outgoing Senator Harry Reid's seat. Heck has also promised to support the party's nominee. 

"Well, we're going to wait and see what happens at the convention, and I will support whomever the nominee is coming out of the convention," said Heck in a phone interview with KUNR last week.

His comments echo Governor Brian Sandoval, who's been less than enthusiastic about Trump's candidacy, but has vowed to vote for him nonetheless.

The moderate Republican governor says he doesn't agree with Trump on all the issues, but the Democratic nominee is "simply not an option."

Sandoval caucused for Marco Rubio and endorsed Kasich last month. Sandoval previously indicated he was wavering in his support for Trump if he became the nominee.

**Watch video of Heller's comments today in Vegas by AP reporter Michelle Rindels**

Julia Ritchey is a former reporter at KUNR Public Radio.
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