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Republican Syrian Lebanese Armenian American Coalition to Host Boca Raton Candidate Forum

The Palm Beach Asian American Republicans and the Republican Syrian Lebanese Armenian American Coalition will jointly host a candidate forum for the upcoming municipal election in the City of Boca Raton, FL on Thursday, February 15, 2018 from 6:00pm to 8:00pm.

The forum will be held at the Boca Raton Community Center, 150 Crawford Blvd., Boca Raton, FL 33432.

Club members, guests, and residents of Boca Raton are invited to attend and hear directly from the candidates on issues of concern to these communities in the City of Boca Raton.

The City of Boca Raton municipal election will be held on Tuesday, March 13, 2018.

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Danny Tarkanian Announces U.S. Senate Bid in Nevada

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By Taniel Koushakjian
Florida Armenians Editor

Today, Danny Tarkanian appeared on the Fox & Friends show to announce his campaign for the U.S. Senate. Tarkanian’s candidacy sets up a primary challenge for incumbent Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) who was first elected in 2012, and whom Tarkanian states “turned his back on us.”

In an email letter to Nevada voters, Tarkanian wrote, “Over the past several weeks, I had many people – literally hundreds – contact me and ask me to please run against Dean Heller. They expressed their frustration with Senator Heller, and all the other politicians, who promise one thing when they are running for office and then do the exact opposite in Washington DC.

[WATCH: Danny Tarkanian Announce His Campaign for U.S. Senate in Nevada]

Tarkanian credits “Senators Paul Laxalt and Richard Bryan, one a Republican, the other a Democrat,” as his inspiration for public service. “They were true statesmen. Public servants with rock solid convictions who kept their word,” he said.

“I am running for United States Senate because Dean Heller turned his back on Nevada since he became a US Senator. He campaigned across our state on the basis of repealing Obamacare, being pro-life, and generally conservative on the issues.

“Unfortunately, he simply changed in Washington DC. Conservatives now refer to him as DC’s Dean Heller rather than Nevada’s Dean Heller.”

In his letter, Tarkanian also acknowledged his previous campaigns for office, particularly his nail-bitting 2016 race for Congress where he lost by 1%.

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The son of legendary University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian, Danny has been a small business owner, philanthropist, and community leader in the Silver State throughout his life.

A recent poll of Republican voters in Nevada by Strategic National finds Heller with a 31% approval rating, and a 43% disapproval rating. The poll further reveals Heller’s vulnerability, which showed that only 39% of respondents hold a favorable opinion of Heller, while 43% of respondents hold an unfavorable opinion of Heller.

In a head-to-head match-up, Heller received 38% to Tarkanian’s 34%, which is within the margin of error.

The Strategic National poll surveyed 500 registered Nevada Republicans on August 1 and 2, and has a margin of error of 4.4%.

Below is Danny Tarkanian’s official statement on running for the United States Senate:

“Over the past several weeks, I have been inundated with text, emails, and phone calls from people of all walks of life across the state of Nevada who are upset with Dean Heller for campaigning one way in Nevada and voting the exact opposite in Washington DC. The refrain is the same: he turned his back on us.

Today, after much thought and discussion with my family and friends, I have decided to run for the United States Senate. I am running for United States Senate because Nevada deserves a Senator who will keep his word and vote in Washington DC the same way he campaigns here in Nevada.

I am a conservative Republican who supports the policies of President Trump to repeal Obamacare and end illegal immigration. I will continue to support President Trump’s policies that have led to a 20% increase in the stock market in just six months. I will join Senator Lee, Senator Cruz, and Senator Paul fighting for real reforms against the liberals in our party.

I look forward to campaigning across the state of Nevada and earning your support. It is time to take a stand. Together, we will make our state, and our country, proud.”

The Only Armenian on the Ballot in Florida

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By Arsine Kaloustian
FLArmenians Managing Editor

After a decade spent in Washington, D.C., the Armenian Assembly of America’s former Director of Communications, Taniel Shant, is now the Republican nominee for Palm Beach County Commission District 5, in South Florida. He is also the only Armenian to appear on the ballot in Florida.

Taniel has spent his entire adult life in public service. One year after he moved to Washington, D.C. he found himself battling the Turkish Lobby and the Azerbaijani Lobby. He worked with our friends in Congress to hold the Bush and Obama Administrations accountable. Throughout his tenure, he advanced various pieces of legislation in Congress and at the state level dealing with Armenian Genocide recognition and Holocaust education, global human rights abuses, international religious freedom, anti-genocide initiatives (Darfur, Sudan; Syria; Iraq), protection of Christians in the Middle East, appropriations, U.S. foreign assistance, and many others.

He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Florida Atlantic University and a Master’s degree in Political Management from The George Washington University. Mr. Shant possesses an impressive pedigree – particularly when gazed at through the lens of the Armenian American community. Not only was Mr. Shant the founder of Florida Armenians, the largest statewide Armenian organization in Florida, but he successfully led the effort to pass a resolution in the Florida State Senate recognizing the Armenian Genocide in 2013.

Armenian American political candidates have always been sparse – and too often, they have proved to be unviable. Mr. Shant’s first time candidacy, however, is proving itself as a force to be reckoned with, having raised over $40,000 in four month’s time – officially the most money ever raised by a Republican candidate in this seat. Mr. Shant is rapidly garnering the backing of Armenian communities throughout the country – Florida, New Jersey, New York, California, New Hampshire, Virginia, Maryland, Washington D.C., Georgia, Massachusetts, and more.

Time after time, I’ve heard Armenians complain that U.S. leaders are not doing enough for Armenian issues, and that we need more Armenians in government. Today, I’m pleased to tell you that we have a tried and tested community leader stepping up to the stage for us, and for all the people in Palm Beach County. Taniel fought on Capitol Hill on behalf of the Armenian American community; and now the Armenian American community has a chance to have one of our own represent us as an elected official. It is time to let our actions speak louder than our words, and show him our support.

If you would like to volunteer for Taniel Shant’s campaign, learn more about his platform, or make a contribution, please visit www.tanielshant.com or email info@tanielshant.com.