By Ray Hagar, Nevada Newsmakers
In her first lengthy interview since announcing her Republican candidacy for governor, Las Vegas City Councilwoman Michele Fiore said on Nevada Newsmakers Tuesday that she wants to bar vaccine mandates, ban Critical Race Theory from seeping into Nevada schools and defended her previous yet unpublished remarks in opposition to Affirmative Action.
Fiore, who announced her intention to run for governor last week, also threw shade at Gov. Steve Sisolak and her fellow Republican in the gubernatorial primary, Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo.
Fiore told host Sam Shad that Lombardo is soft on the Second Amendment, which protects the right of individuals to own a firearm. It is the issue that’s atop of Fiore’s platform.
“I know that Joe says, ‘I’m (for the) Second Amendment and I’ve been carrying a gun on my hip for the last 30 years,” she said. “That doesn’t mean he wants you to carry a gun. So in a real Republican primary, you have to be a real Republican to get out of it (and into general election).”
About Sisolak, Fiore said: “Steve is going to have a lot of issues with me in the general (election) and it’s gonna be a really big fight.”
Fiore also brushed off a reported FBI investigation into campaign finances and acknowledged her feud with fellow councilwoman Victoria Seamen.
“I got her elected to the city council,” Fiore said of Seaman.
A physical altercation reportedly occurred at City Hall between the two councilwomen. Afterward, Seaman accused Fiore of breaking her finger. Yeah, sure, Fiore countered:
“The allegations are the allegations,” she said. “I mean, I’ve never seen an x-ray showing that her finger is broken.”
Fiore said she opposes ‘Critical Race Theory’ because it is, “literally teaching our children in school that we are a racist country and our country was built on racist groups.”
Instead, Fiore,said, she hopes to “unite black and white,” but opposes the Black Lives Matter movement.
“And when I say, ‘unite black and white,’ I mean the Black Lives Matter movement has really alienated a lot of white people,” Fiore said. “And I really believe that was constructed and put in place on purpose to keep Americans divided.”
Various races have the same blood types, Fiore said.
“When it comes down to it, let’s look at our blood types. I’m an rh negative O,” she said. “If someone is bleeding — black, white, red, brown, yellow — it doesn’t matter. My blood can save that person because it is a universal blood type. We need to look at each other as brothers and sisters, not as black and white.
“And I say that because through this whole war zone of Black Lives Matter going through the City of Las Vegas, trying to break (into) our federal building, breaking our small minority-owned businesses, shooting our cops, these things are big scars that don’t go away.”
Fiore, was reportedly investigated by the Nevada GOP last year for her alleged “racially charged” comments uttered at the Clark County GOP convention, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. The investigation, however, was inconclusive. Although she refused to tell reporters what she said then, a black activist told the R-J that she said was against affirmative action.
Fiore addressed it Tuesday:
“Calling me a racist, you know, calling me a racist because I don’t believe in Affirmative Action,” she said. “When we go out for a job, I believe the person most qualified should get that job. I believe the person most qualified in the school system should get those seats and not by the color of our skin.”
Fiore then criticized Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford, a Democrat.
“When you have the Attorney General putting our Asian-American and our Pacific Islanders down at the bottom of the (inaudible) pole over affirmative action and you can’t get positions unless you are black, that is a real problem.”
Fiore said that type of discrimination is going on in the AG’s office but was vague with facts.
“It’s a fact … this happened last year, he signed on to a bill. Absolutely. And I’ll get it to you. That is something I was very, very disappointed in.”
After the interview, Fiore sent Nevada Newsmakers a copy of the opinion piece in the R-J, written by Victor Joecks last year, which stated Ford signed “Nevada onto an amicus brief in support of Harvard University’s practice of downgrading Asian applicants based on their race.”
Shad asked Fiore how she would respond if accused of racism:
“Pul-eez, if they are calling me a racist, they are a racist,” Fiore said. “Understand, I have met many individuals that are black that hate white people. So let’s be crystal clear,” she said, adding that her family has black members.
“My uncle, my mother’s brother, Uncle Simon, is black,” Fiore said. “My grandfather, you know, Mr. Happy Pants, slept with their neighbor at the time, a beautiful, beautiful black woman. And out, here comes Uncle Simon.
Fiore said her family was diverse:
“We’re an Italian family and Italian men are obsessed with beautiful black women. so we have black and Italian babies in my family. My uncle is black. So when people want to call me a racist, get over it.
“My mom is a lesbian. You know, we have the United Nations in my family,” Fiore said. “We have Jewish in my family so you can take that race card, and you know what to do with it.”
The FBI raided Fiore’s home in January and she is facing an investigation into the campaign finances, according to the Review-Journal. Federal grand jury subpoenas have also been issued for records in the investigation.
Fiore said FBI investigation was all about “false allegations.”
“When someone makes false claims to the FBI, they have to investigate,” she said. “They contacted me in January. They had some questions. We’re in October going into November and that’s it… Again, it’s just shows how much I am under scrutiny. It is what it is.”
Fiore said she is running for governor because she has issues with the way Sisolak handled the pandemic response, including the state’s pandemic and vaccine policies — plus the forced shutdown of Nevada’s casinos and small businesses. She said she could do more about these problem as governor than as a city councilwoman.
“As a servant leader, you need to look at the policies of what the governor has put out, hanging onto his emergency orders going on two years,” Fiore said. “It’s a problem — the people he has put out of business, the people who he has put out of work, the antiquated unemployment system that we were so desperately trying to make sure people got their money. These are issues the governor of a state needs to take care of for the people, period.”
Fiore said she has been vaccinated but opposes corporate or government mandates to force others to do the same. She opposes the policy of terminating employees for not taking the vaccine.
“I am totally vaccinated,” she said. “I am not anti-vax. What I am is anti- forcing people on an unconstitutional mandate. Listen, if you don’t want to take a vaccine, don’t take a vaccine. There is absolutely no reason to force someone to take a vaccine. The people who have been vaccinated, they are saying, ‘Why don’t they take the vaccine? If they don’t take the vaccine, they are going to die. OK great, let them eat cake because it is their choice. It’s their body, their choice.”