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RGJ: Shelley Berkley Sticks to her Message in Effort to Unseat Nevada Sen Dean Heller

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U.S. Rep. Shelley Berkley played nice at her U.S. Senate campaign stop Thursday in Reno.

Berkley, D-Las Vegas, failed to mention or say anything about her main opponent, U.S. Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., until prompted to do so by the media after her speech.

Instead, Berkley remained focused on what could be her strongest suit: concern for the veterans of U.S. military service.

The stop in Reno marked the continuation of Berkley's "Prioritize Veterans Tour," which has already made stops in Pahrump, Laughlin and Las Vegas. It is scheduled to end Friday in Elko.

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Although she never uttered the word, "Heller," Berkley said "yes" when asked after her speech if Heller was among those in Washington, D.C., who votes against veterans issues.

When later prodded by a gaggle of TV reporters to mention a specific vote against veterans by Heller, Berkley said:

"I'll give you a specific example -- the homeless veteran housing voucher program. I fought very hard to make sure that was created and adequately funded. He voted to dismantle the program, to end the program."
Berkley's campaign said Heller voted for a Republican continuing resolution that cut $75 million for homeless veterans in 2011, including the elimination of housing vouchers.

"The cuts to homeless veteran vouchers are to me, one of the cruelest things we can do," Berkley said during her speech. "What this shows is our veterans need somebody that will stand up and fight for them. The next senator from the state of Nevada should make veterans in this state and this nation a major priority for this country and state."


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