Action Figure: Michael Roberson

Republican state senator

Photo by Zack W

Photo by Zack W

ACHIEVEMENTS: The hardline conservatism that highlighted Roberson’s first term in the 2011 legislative session gave way, in 2013, to apparent moderation. The new tone was epitomized by his support for a ballot initiative that could lead to higher taxes on the mining industry. That revenue is necessary to buoy our deflated education system, he says, but it’s also inoculation against the alternative: a business margins tax, which he says would create a second recession. His shift—however slight—coincided perfectly with partisan gridlock in Washington, D.C., casting Roberson as a reasonable man of action in an age of political dysfunction.

THE HOT-BUTTON INTERIM: Roberson is serving on two committees covering the hottest issues du jour. One, to which he appointed himself, will study the formula for funding K-12 education and propose an alternative; a second, to which he was appointed, is the Governor’s Behavioral Health and Wellness Council. One of its jobs is to unearth—and fix—the root causes of the Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital busing fiasco.

VICTORY AGENDA: “My goal is to win my re-election [in November], go back to Carson City, keep working on my priorities and obtain a Republican majority in the Senate,” Roberson says.

SOUTHERN PRIDE: “The thing that’s important to me is Southern Nevada issues: transportation (Interstate 11), health care (we need a UNLV medical school) and education (getting more money to the CCSD).”

TOP DOGS: Roberson’s bichon frisé-shih tzu mix, Winston, and rescued Maltese-terrier mix, Franklin, inspired his support of an anti-animal cruelty bill that passed in 2011.

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