Las Vegas, NV – The NV Dems welcomed U.S. Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid to our party HQ in Las Vegas yesterday to preview our “Battle Born / Battleground” First in the West Caucus Dinner. Tomorrow’s event will bring Hillary Clinton, Martin O’Malley and Bernie Sanders to the MGM Grand as the presidential candidates ramp up their efforts to win Nevada’s Democratic caucuses. Senator Reid played a critical role in pushing Nevada to the front of the line on the presidential calendar in 2008, making us the first Western state and the third state in the country to make its voice heard in the Democratic presidential primary.
Here’s a sampling of the press coverage:
At a press conference Monday about his “Battle Born/Battleground” First in the West Caucus Countdown Dinner with Hillary Clinton, Martin O’Malley and Bernie Sanders, the Senate minority leader boasted about Nevada’s position of importance in the nation’s primaries and caucuses.
Nevada’s Democratic caucus is Feb. 20. The Silver State’s caucus will be the third, after Iowa’s caucuses and New Hampshire’s primary.
Reid pushed hard for the earlier position and took a verbal victory lap at the press conference over the achievement. Although Nevada was third in 2012, Reid said the caucuses weren’t as big of a deal then because President Barack Obama was running for re-election.
“We wanted a more diverse program for these candidates,” Reid said. “We needed something in the West and Nevada took care of that.”
Reid said one advantage of Nevada’s new place of prominence is that candidates have had to articulate their stance on the Yucca Mountain Project, a plan to store the nation’s high-level nuclear waste in a repository about 100 miles north of Las Vegas. The proposed waste site has been a point of contention for decades. Reid has been one of the state’s fiercest opponents of the project.
Noting that Yucca Mountain is “basically gone,” Reid said multiple times, “There’s nothing there now.”
He concluded talking about Yucca Mountain by crediting the new caucus order as putting western states’ concerns at the forefront of the presidential discourse. Supporters of the Yucca Mountain plan have derided Nevada’s stance as being selfish and “not in my backyard” politics.
“I think it has been very important to have the West brought into what happens in presidential politics,” Reid said.
He said he will endorse a candidate after the caucus.
Tickets for the event started at $125, but have sold out. Money raised will go to the Nevada State Democratic Party.
Also in attendance will be U.S. Senate candidate Catherine Cortez Masto and U.S. Rep. Dina Titus, who is seeking re-election. Doors open at 6 p.m.
Reid spoke in advance of a Democratic party dinner Wednesday, which will feature speeches from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley. Reid said that moving the Nevada caucuses up to third in the primary season brought Western issues to greater prominence in the election, including opposition to a nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, which Reid called “scrap metal.”
Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) panned Marco Rubio has a “hypocrite” for flipping his stance on immigration.
“Marco Rubio, who was one of the four Republicans to come up with a comprehensive immigration bill, how could this man suddenly turn against what he was responsible for doing?” he said Monday during an event sponsored by the Nevada Democratic Party.
“It’s as if he just went to a different sphere of the world.”
Noting that the Florida Republican is now calling on deporting children who had been brought to America by their parents, referred to as Dreamers for the bill that would grant them legal status, Reid went further.
“It’s not just Trump who is so anti-immigrant, Rubio leads the charge, if I’m concerned, because he is such a hypocrite,” Reid said, before arguing that there’s no reason why any minority American should vote for the Republican Party in the 2016 presidential election.
All three Democratic presidential candidates are holding rallies or campaign events in Nevada while they’re in the area for a dinner party with Sen. Harry Reid.
Hillary Clinton is visiting supporters in Henderson’s Sun City Anthem community and then touring the Culinary Academy of Las Vegas on Wednesday before attending the dinner at the MGM Grand resort.
Bernie Sanders will hold a rally at the Tropicana resort Wednesday afternoon that will feature a Red Hot Chili Peppers band member and a co-creator of The Daily Show.
Martin O’Malley will hold a question-and-answer session Thursday morning with the Economic Club of Las Vegas at Caesars Palace.
All three candidates plan to attend the “Battle Born/Battleground” First in the West Caucus Dinner Wednesday evening with Reid and the state Democratic party.