Tuesday, Aug. 17, 2004 | 2:33 a.m.
In heavily Democratic Assembly District 9, former Libertarian turned Democrat Lewis Whitten faces seven-time incumbent Assemblywoman Chris Giunchigliani.
The winner of the Sept. 7 primary will go on to face Independent American candidate Lee Wayne Hayes in the general election with no Republican challenger.
District 9 has 7,076 registered Democrats to just 3,770 registered Republicans.
Giunchigliani, 49, was first elected to the Assembly in 1990.
She resigned from her job as a director of the Community College of Southern Nevada's government relations office in July after some university system regents complained there were conflicts between her part-time job as a legislator and her job at the college. She said she doesn't think this will affect the election because of the regents acts concerning the open-meeting law.
If elected for an eighth term, Giunchigliani said she plans to continue pursuing reduced class size for kindergarten, adding days to the school year, health care for the uninsured and equity and fairness in property taxes.
Giunchigliani, who has served a a teacher's association president and on neighborhood associations, said her constituents are concerned with growth, air quality and education. She said she plans to do something to limit the amount of helicopter flights over residential areas.
Whitten, 37, lost a 2000 bid as a Libertarian in Assembly District 10, but he has since been redistricted and has switched to the Democratic party.
He said he decided to run as a Democrat and give my neighbors a choice,
Giunchigliani ran unopposed in the 2002 election.
Whitten, a former blackjack dealer who now owns an art studio and custom framing shop, said that he is fiscally conservative and socially liberal. He said that a vote for him is a vote for an honest guy.