Mark Robertson, an Army veteran and business owner, has clinched the Republican nomination for a House seat in Nevada with a large campaign war chest and a message centered on protecting freedom of speech and pushing back against government mandates.
Mr. Robertson will face the Democratic incumbent, Representative Dina Titus, 72, in the general election in November in a race that reflects national Democrats’ struggles over the economy amid the coronavirus crisis.
The Associated Press called the race for Mr. Robertson on Wednesday, a day after voters chose from a crowded field of Republicans hoping to unseat Ms. Titus.
Ms. Titus, who is in her sixth term, has for years easily claimed victory with the support of working-class voters and Latinos. But Republicans have a higher chance of success this fall after her district, which includes the urban center of Las Vegas, was redrawn to add more Republican voters by taking in larger portions of Henderson and Boulder City in Clark County.
Ms. Titus has also been facing stronger political headwinds because her tourist-heavy district has been hit hard by the pandemic. High unemployment along with rising gasoline and food prices have made her vulnerable to attacks from Republicans on crime, jobs and inflation.
The seat will be hotly contested: The National Republican Campaign Committee has added Ms. Titus to its target list of vulnerable Democrats, and Ms. Titus failed to get the ambassadorship she sought from the Biden administration because Democrats could not risk losing her seat.
Mr. Robertson, who served in the military for 30 years, touted himself as a fiscal conservative determined to fight mandates on education and health care.