Posts Tagged ‘Sue Lowden’

ICYMI: Mid-Week Political Round Up

By Elizabeth Crum | 1:35 pm August 24th, 2011

This “In Case You Missed It” feature was supposed to be a weekend thing, but I’ve got so many browser tabs open, I guess it is going to be semiweekly. Get caught up, Dear Readers. And comment below.

Special Election (September 13, 2011)

Ralston hosted a televised debate between Kate Marshall and Mark Amodei. Part One. Part Two. Or read our story on it.

KTNV has the early voting locations and schedules in Clark County.

Politico looks at all the lobbed bombs at Obama by the GOP.

A reporter at the conservative news site Washington Examiner writes about how (he thinks) Amodei could lose. Among other things, he cites a Public Policy Polling survey commissioned by DailyKos. Today, the same reporter heaped more coals by writing about Amodei’s changed position on the Ryan budget.

Both Amodei and Marshall tout positive reviews by the National Rifle Association.

The Marshall campaign launched a pretty scathing ad against Amodei. The NRCC continues to run equally scathing ads against Marshall (they have now spent over $500,000 on TV spots). Gloves are definitely off in this race as early voting approaches.

Amodei signed the tax pledge. Again. And American’s for Tax Reform defend the pledge on the subject of loopholes. The issue was raised by Marshall in criticisms of Amodei.

Anjeanette Damon recently questioned Amodei on tax issues on her show To the Point. When he said he had a consistent record on taxes as well as a record consistent with the tax pledge, she asked him if was fair to say he was consistent in his inconsistency.

Ralston discovered (and Tweeted) that this is not, after all, the first special House election in Nevada’s history. D.R. Ashley (R) won his with 3,691 votes back in in 1865. Fun stuff.

U.S. Senate

Political opponents Sen. Heller and Rep. Berkley work together (sorta) on the debt committee issue in D.C.

Rep. Shelley Berkley wants women in Reno to know what she has done for them. Ditto, Native Americans. She is clearly trying to win hearts and minds in northern Nevada.

Berkley spent some time in Carson City this week, too.

Heller commented. He also said he thinks Judge Russell should have disclosed his relationship with Mark Amodei in the CD-2 special election court case.

GOP Presidential Race

Romney is going to roll out his jobs plan in (you guessed it) Nevada on Labor Day weekend. Ann Romney was here this week.

@RalstonFlash Tweeted earlier this week that Rick Perry is talking to Mike Slanker (and I am sure others) about getting a ground game going here.

FiveThirtyEight did some interesting graphics on the GOP field.

Miscellaneous & Sundry

Anjeanette Damon wrote a fun piece on the many mock Twitter accounts in Nevada politics. (Are you following me on Twitter yet, peeps? @elizcrum )

Rep. Joe Heck chimed in on Libya. Earlier in the summer, he introduced a bill to pull the U.S. out of the NATO mission in Libya by cutting off funding.

Heck’s House race next year (we do not yet know who will challenge him) is anticipated to be one of the toughest in the land.

I am hearing there is an effort afoot to recall North Las Vegas Mayor Shari Buck. A group will file the necessary kick-off papers on September 7, if the energy doesn’t fizzle by then.

Sue Lowden recently spoke in Laughlin. She reflected on what she would have done differently in last year’s U.S. Senate primary (“I guess I would have tried harder to win over the vote of the Tea Party group”) and said she does not rule out a future run.

State Sen. Ruben Kihuen spoke to the AFL-CIO in Reno and was on AD’s show this week, but still has not announced that he is running for Congress next year.

You can track the Tweets of Nevada legislators on this page. Bookmark it, maybe.


Team Lowden Says They Reached Half of Their ID’d Suppporters in Early Voting

By Elizabeth Crum | 11:24 am June 5th, 2010

On a conference call with press this morning, Team Lowden coach Robert Uithoven said they had “pretty good success” with their early voting Get Out the Vote effort, reaching about half of their ID’d voters.

Not sure that can be called success, though.  If Lowden only got half of her confirmed supporters to the polls early, she is going to need a huge Tuesday push which, as Ralston Tweeted during the call, seems pretty unlikely.

Uithoven referenced past voter data on Angle in Churchill, Elko and other rural counties where she historically fared less well and said they have been focused picking up votes in those areas.

He claimed they are “up outside the margin of error” after early voting, based on 6,000 interviews.

Uithoven also mentioned Team Tark, saying Danny has “possibly benefited from staying out of” the Angle-Lowden fray.  He added, though, that Tark has been relatively “stagnant” in the polls and said he believes Tark has topped out.

We then had the usual mention of “outside groups” going after Lowden, characterized nicely by Ralston via Twitter:

“Fine whine.”

Perhaps the most notable thing about the call was that there were no questions from press, but then there’s not too much that hasn’t been asked and answered in recent weeks.

I don’t know about everyone else, but I am ready for Tuesday night and would probably just fast forward through the next three days if I could.

WaTi: Suffolk U Poll Says Angle In Lead in US Senate Race

By Elizabeth Crum | 7:07 am June 3rd, 2010

Despite a sample of 400 GOP likely voters, I am taking this poll done by the Suffolk University Political Research Center with a full shaker of salt (although I think we can be pretty sure the Angle campaign will be using it in a press release later today).

The poll says Angle is now in the lead in the U.S. Senate race with 33% and has Tarkanian and Lowden virtually tied for second at 26% and 25% respectively.

The poll also asked about “intensity” (whether a voter was Definitely, Probably, or Maybe) voting for the candidates.  The Definitelies were at 53-51-52 (Angle-Tark-Lowden).  The Probablies were at 33-36-30.  And the Might-Change-My-Minds were at 12-13-17.

The M-D poll published in the RJ on May 28 had Lowden at 30% with Angle at 25% and Tark at 20% (not at 200% as the WaTi story says, although am sure Tarkanian would love it if every Nevadan was voting for him twice).

If you believed those M-D numbers, and if you believe these from this this Suffolk U poll, then you believe Angle has gained eight points while Lowden has slipped by five in just the past five days.

I don’t.

I do find this interesting, though:

When supporters of the other candidates were asked which of the top three hopefuls they would support if they knew their first choice couldn’t win, Mrs. Lowden led at 33 percent, followed by Mr. Tarkanian at 25 percent and Mrs. Angle at 14 percent.

So one-third of those voters whose first choice was Angle or Tark would go with Lowden as their second choice, but only 14% of those whose first choice was Lowden or Tark would go with Angle as next-best.

This is interesting, too:

But when GOP voters were asked which candidate has a better chance of defeating Mr. Reid, Miss Lowden led at 33 percent led again, but this time with Mrs. Angle second at 27 percent and Mr. Tarkanian at 23 percent.

Taken with Angle’s numbers above, this means a segment of Angle voters believe Lowden has a better chance of beating Harry Reid, but they are going to vote for Angle anyhow.

Hat Tip on the poll to @RalstonFlash on Twitter.

Update (at 7:09 AM): Silly me.  The Tea Party Express, not Team Angle, was first out with a press release with the subject line “POLL SHOCKER: Angle Leads Lowden by 8% in Nevada Senate Race” and the header “SHARRON ANGLE TAKES THE LEAD IN NEVADA U.S. SENATE RACE.”

Team Chachas Gets Bonus Points for Creativity

By Elizabeth Crum | 1:17 pm June 1st, 2010

Check out The Elephant Ad.

In other Chachas-related news, we had (this morning) a corrected press release stating that only one of two previously mentioned and hardly-heard-of candidates was dropping out and endorsing him:  Gary Bernstein.

Never heard of Gary?  Here is his website featuring the one TV ad I saw him run, plus his bio.

Anyhow, the last M-D poll had Chachas polling at 2%.  He’s reportedly been courting the Undecideds as best he can, but that is only 10 to 15% of likely voters.

Even in the highly unlikely event (snowballs, anyone?) that Chachas were to win the hearts and minds of all GOP voters who have yet to make up their minds, he would still only come in at 12 to 17%.  Which would land him in fourth place.

Which, if it happened, would be fairly respectable for a man who, comparative to the three frontrunners, spent very little time and money competing against the field.

F2F: This Week’s Lowden, Angle, Tarkanian Interviews

By Elizabeth Crum | 8:43 pm May 26th, 2010

All three Face to Face interviews with the three U.S. Senate GOP frontrunners can now be seen here.   (To scroll and/or see previous days, just click on the small arrow in the lower right of the view box.)

If you are a Republican who intends to vote in the primary have not yet made up your mind about these candidates, you should watch them.

My quick three cents:

Tarkanian did as well as I’ve ever seen him do in an interview, and maybe a little better.  At one point he hesitated and gave some thought before answering a question (about taxing online gaming) which tells me he was unscripted (at least on that point).  And Tark did not get testy even when provoked (not that the host would ever do such a thing), which I found notable in light of his reputation for getting a little snippy when pressed.

Angle was herself, which is to say she toed the conservative line and reiterated for the seven-hundredth time that, yes, she really believes she is mainstream enough to beat Harry Reid.  The prison/Scientology thing came up and, interestingly, there was new stuff to say because Ralston had done his homework on the program (which apparently exaggerated its success rate and is now defunct).  Would have been nice if Angle had known that herself, but she did say, quite firmly, “I am not a Scientologist.”

Lowden did as well as could be expected including defending her own record, defending her husband for being rich and taking fat bonuses, and justifying her recent attack ads on Angle.  She declined to answer the should-Civil-Rights-apply-to-private-businesses question (thank you, Rand Paul, for making that part of our national dialogue this week)…but then her team put out an after-show clarifying statement that was Flashed by Ralston a few minutes ago.  The gist:  she is for Civil Rights.

(Thank goodness, because after #bartergate and #busgate, I’m not sure any of us were ready to endure #blackpanthergate.)

Is it June 8 yet?

Lowden Raises $550K, Personally Puts In $488K in Pre-Primary Reporting Period

By Elizabeth Crum | 7:21 pm May 26th, 2010

From Team Lowden re: their April 1 thru May 19 FEC Pre-primary report (and supporting information):

Total Receipts for the pre-primary reporting period (April 1 – May 19):   $1,038,662.16

Total (personal) Contributions for the pre-primary reporting period (April 1 – May 19):   $488,662.16

Total Disbursements for the pre-primary reporting period (April 1 – May 19):   $1,098,231.63

Cash on Hand:   $209,325.03 (as of 5/19/2010)


Total Receipts for the entire campaign cycle:   $3,210,873.62

65% of the campaigns receipts to date have been contributed by Nevadans.

Plus a little dig at Angle (who we can assume is “some opponents”):

The amount of each contribution ranges from $.10 to $4,800, and the occupations of these contributors include Janitor and Housekeeper…work that some opponents have condescendingly said “Americans don’t do.”

The Anti-Angle Argument: She Can’t Win the General

By Elizabeth Crum | 1:12 pm May 24th, 2010

Is there enough time for this line (“The Woman Who Can Save Harry Reid”) — which is TIME online’s echo of this morning’s POLITICO piece (“Reid angles for tea party foe in Nev.”) — to sway the voters and save Sue Lowden’s campaign?

I wondered all last week why Team Lowden was running an ad going after Angle on more flimsy criticisms while ignoring her most obvious weakness:  she’s so conservative on so many issues that she may not be able to beat Reid in the general election.

Team Reid will definitely pummel Angle on that very thing all summer and half the fall.

(It is also worth noting that during the Big Announcement tour last fall, Lowden pledged not to go negative on her GOP primary opponents. But that was when she thought she would easily win and long before the Tea Party Express (and their money) gave Angle a huge boost.)

Hat Tip on the TIME and POLITICO links:  @RalstonFlash on Twitter.

- – -

Speaking of Angle’s conservative creds, this is kinda funny, as Tweeted by Sebelius:

MT @SteveSebelius: Does Sharron Angle think liquor should be illegal?

and ReTweeted and commented upon by @RalstonFlash:

Extremism in defense of imbibing is no vice.

How dare Ralston hijack the great words of Barry Goldwater that way?!  I am outraged.  (No, not really.)

(Actually, I bet a lot of Americans don’t know that Goldwater lifted those words — “Extremism in the defense of Liberty is no vice” — from Roman philosopher/statesman/lawyer Marcus Cicero.)

Anyhow, the linked piece is a post by Sebelius on Angle’s uber-conservative stance on both marijuana and alcohol as expressed in an interview she did a few years back.

Sebelius asks:

Wait, what? Alcohol — which is currently legal — should be treated the same as marijuana — which is currently not legal? Is she serious? A candidate from the state of Nevada, which is practically sponsored by booze companies, is not a proponent of legal alcohol?


But then this:

Despite the 2006 interview, however, Angle’s spokesman, Jerry Stacy, said today Angle doesn’t want to bring back Prohibition. “Sharron doesn’t want to make alcohol illegal,” he said, noting that Angle has never introduced legislation along those lines, and even voted against taxes on booze.

“Alcohol is a legal substance, and adults can choose to imbibe,” Stacy said.

So, for the record, Sharron Angle is not a Prohibitionist.

But as Politico points out, she is still for/against all this stuff:

She wants to privatize Social Security; cut federal spending by hundreds of billions of dollars; build nuclear power plants inside Yucca Mountain; abolish the federal income tax and institute a “simpler, fairer, flatter tax system”; “defund Obamacare”; pull the United States out of the United Nations; ban nearly all abortions; get rid of the Energy and Education departments as well as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac; and remove all campaign finance restrictions, requiring instead immediate reporting of donations.

And in a state with a large and growing Hispanic population, Angle takes a hard-line view on immigration, siding with the tough new Arizona law that gives law enforcement officials broad discretion to crack down on suspected illegal aliens.

Dems Up with Second Busgate Song

By Elizabeth Crum | 3:11 pm May 21st, 2010

Are we having fun yet?

From @RalstonFlash on Twitter just now:

First Edgar Winter (“Free Ride”) and now Dion and the inevitable “Runaround Sue” as the Ds push the Lowden/bus story.

Here was the first ad if you missed it.

Lowden Yanks Name from Bus Title

By Elizabeth Crum | 11:30 am May 21st, 2010

AD had the busgate update yesterday.

I had asked Team Lowden on Tuesday whether having Lowden’s name on the bus title – even though they claimed that was done only for insurance purposes – wasn’t going to be the crux of the problem with FEC rules even with a lease agreement in hand.

Holding title indicates ownership, I reasoned, so the value of at least half the bus could feasibly be considered a donation if not otherwise specified in some private agreement.

I never received an answer, but I guess their choice to remove Lowden’s name from the title shows they thought there was a valid concern there.

The FEC won’t rule on this until well after June 8, so it only matters in terms of the possible political fallout for Team Lowden.

Predictable: A Bit of Angle Bashing from Team Lowden

By Elizabeth Crum | 7:19 pm May 20th, 2010

With Angle surging in the polls — a PPP (automated) poll today had Angle at 29%, Lowden at 26% and Tark at 24% (the sample was 651 GOP voters, taken 5/12-16) — this is not a big surprise.

I believe AD was up first with the new anti-Angle ad from Team Lowden.

The ad goes after Angle on (1) once trying to raise legislative pay and (2) the whole prison reform via “Scientology” thing.


(1) Legislative pay is currently a measly $7K and Angle was trying to raise it (I think?) by a few hundred dollars.  Even if she was trying to double it, it’s not that big of a deal in the big picture.  (I’ve often wondered how we get any quality candidates as state legislators get paid very little to meet once every other year and sporadically for special sessions.)

(2) The prison reform story is totally overblown.  Yes, there were some experimental things going on at that facility in New Mexico, but the recidivism rate was low and Angle, who was big into prison reform, was taking a look.  From what I can see (and have heard in interviews with her) Angle is a straight-talking Bible-believing Christian who is not a secret disciple of Tom Cruise & Co.

You may or may not be comfortable with Angle, but you definitely know what you are getting if you vote for her.

It’s the best Team Lowden could do with this ad, though, because these two issues are really all there is.

Angle has been nothing if not public and consistent in her views and votes.

Under Fire, Team Lowden Points Out Harry Reid’s Past FEC Violations

By Elizabeth Crum | 9:29 am May 20th, 2010

Three days after #busgate broke, this fiery missive from Team Lowden:

Harry’s History with the FEC

Harry Reid has had Several FEC Complaints Filed Against Him Throughout His Career – and on At Least Two of Them He was Found in Violation by the FEC.

GOP Frontrunner Sue Lowden: Harry Reid deploys dirty tricks for a media stunt against me, but he is the candidate who has a history of abusing campaign finance laws.

(Las Vegas, NV) — Today, Nevada businesswoman and U.S. Senate candidate Sue Lowden responded to Harry Reid’s history of FEC investigations and violations. According to the LVRJ, in late 2009 an architecture firm went under investigation by the FEC for irregular campaign contributions to Harry Reid. Throughout Harry Reid’s three decades in Washington, he has racked up numerous FEC complaints, two of which he was found in violation and penalized accordingly.

“Harry Reid’s campaign reeks of desperation,” stated Sue Lowden. “Poll after poll shows me beating him by double digits in November, and for that reason he is searching high and low for ways to discredit my candidacy by having his campaign cronies try to influence a Republican primary. Republican voters are not going to allow Harry Reid, the SEIU and the Nevada Democrat Party select our nominee.

“This FEC allegation is just the latest scheme in Harry Reid’s bag of smears. The best part is that throughout his decades long career, Harry has been accused of numerous campaign finance violations. A new investigation was initiated just a few months ago for irregular contributions to Harry Reid’s campaign.

“Anyone can file an FEC complaint against a candidate. That is why Harry Reid’s liberal allies were able to file this absurd and unfounded complaint against me. However, being found in violation is a completely different story. Harry Reid has been penalized for at least two FEC violations in his career. Harry Reid deploys dirty tricks for a media stunt against me, but he is the candidate who has a history of abusing campaign finance laws,” Lowden concluded.


In November 2009, a local architecture firm went under investigation by the FEC for irregular contributions to Senator Harry Reid. Read the full article [here].

In 2000, the FEC found reason to believe violation occurred, and entered into a conciliation agreement for $12,500 fine against Friends for Harry Reid. Read the full report [here].

In 1999, the FEC found reason to believe a violation occurred, and entered into a conciliation agreement for $3,000 fine against Friends for Harry Reid. Read the report [here].

State Dems Put Out Ad on Lowden Bus Situation

By Elizabeth Crum | 8:48 pm May 19th, 2010

The state Dems today put together an ad about the controversy with Sue Lowden’s bus. I have a supporting role, along with other Nevada journalists talking about the story (I feel so used).

If you haven’t heard about this, here’s the original Sun story based on an accusation from Team Tarkanian and the follow up stories from the LVRJ and the AP.

The most current version of the story is that the bus is being leased, and that Lowden’s name was only put on the title for insurance purposes.

Unfortunately for Lowden, she had previously said the bus was donated, and to complicate things it seems Team Lowden made some oversights in the reporting of the bus to the FEC.

A Few Notes About Erick Erickson’s Criticisms of Lowden and Re-Endorsement of Tarkanian

By Elizabeth Crum | 7:45 pm May 13th, 2010

From Erick Erickson of Red State, one of the darlings of the conservative blogosphere, a re-endorsement of Danny Tarkanian intermixed with a few questions and comments from me (which should not be interpreted as a defense of Lowden so much as an effort to set the record straight):

Pretty much the entirety of the Republican Establishment is lining up behind Sue Lowden to beat Harry Reid in Nevada.

Not me.

I just don’t trust her. From her record in the Nevada legislature to her time as head of the Nevada GOP, I think conservatives can do better. I think Danny Tarkanian makes a lot of sense.

Trust can be a pretty subjective thing, but I know Erick and he has no doubt done his research (although I am pretty sure he has never actually met or spoke with Lowden).  And Danny Tarkanian has no voting record to trust or mistrust.

While Sue Lowden has been running on the “beat Harry Reid” theme, she has ignored both her campaign contributions to Harry Reid and issues. Meanwhile, Danny Tarkanian is taking clear, conservative policy positions we can all support.

Lowden has a TV ad out addressing those Reid contributions two-ish decades ago (which is now old news here in Nevada), and she’s raised/donated nearly $250,000 for GOP candidates in the years since.  And whatever one may think of how she falls on the issues, it’s a bit unfair to say she has “ignored” them.

The race in Nevada has tightened to ten points in a Research 2000 poll and internal Nevada polls have the gap between Lowden and Danny Tarkanian much closer.

True.  But the latest update is that Angle has passed Tarkanian and pulled within a few points of Lowden, if you believe this new poll.  (In other words, Lowden’s loss has been mostly Angle’s gain, not Tark’s.)

Let’s delve into this below the fold. Lowden is, right now, totally on defense over her campaign contributions to Harry Reid — largely because Danny Tarkanian talked about them when everyone else was ignoring them.

Danny Tarkanian has received the endorsement of the Minuteman Project for clear positioning on immigration. Meanwhile, Sue Lowden is wavering on the issue of benefits to illegal immigrants. Check out Danny Tarkanian’s latest ad on immigration and you’ll get the picture. Danny has a clear policy prescription and Sue is muddying the water over whether or not she supports benefits to illegal aliens.

Lowden has likewise flip-flopped on abortion. It took her campaign almost two weeks to make up its mind on what her position is. She’s also running a campaign devoid of messages — something about “checks and chickens” with a few plugs for gender and male bashing.

I’m not convinced there has been a flip-flop on abortion.  I’ve looked at the record and talked with Lowden about her position, and what others might see as “waffling” comes across to me to as compassion and sensitivity toward women who find themselves facing a tough decision.

Making it even worse for Lowden, she chickened out in a debate with Danny Tarkanian. Lowden canceled her appearance at a debate in Reno at the last minute after getting slammed by Danny Tarkanian at the debate in Las Vegas the night before. She has allegedly passed on media appearances instead dispatching her campaign manager to do radio (the Heidi Harris Show) and Jon Ralston’s Face-to-Face. On Face to Face, her campaign manager revived bartergate with quixotic statements about access to healthcare.

“Chickened out” is an unfair characterization of Lowden’s withdrawal from that forum in Reno.  There was behind the scenes controversy brewing over whether or not there might be profit-sharing among the sponsoring grassroots groups, along with questions about whether any of the participating candidates would financially benefit, so rather than risk any bad press Lowden chose to pull out.  Considering that she was coming off a few very bad weeks, one really can’t blame her for avoiding even the perception of impropriety.

And in at least one of the cases where Lowden campaign manager Robert Uithoven appeared on her behalf, he was invited.

You want to know what “bartergate” is? If you haven’t seen Jay Leno mocking her for it, just read this. Lowden is going to be a general election nightmare. She may be backed by pretty much every establishment Republican, but that’s because she is an establishment Republican.

Questions about whether or not Lowden is ready to withstand the heat in the general election are valid.  She’s been mercilessly ridiculed by Team Reid, and that will continue as long as they think it’s working.

We have too many of those in Washington — people who give Harry Reid campaign contributions, then run against him.

I’m with Danny Tarkanian and I hope you will be too.

Of even bigger concern to Team Lowden than Erickson’s endorsement is whether Tarkanian will soon get a nod from conservative powerhouse and grassroots favorite son Jim DeMint, as I am hearing may happen.

Sue Lowden’s Q1 Numbers

By Elizabeth Crum | 5:28 pm April 15th, 2010

Total Receipts for the Quarter (Jan 1 – March 31): $1,353,206 — consists of $652,601.02 raised, plus her matching contributions plus $47K in pledges “in transit” at time of filing

Total Disbursements for the Quarter:  $1,582,030

Cash on Hand:  $268,894.50 as of 3/31/10

Campaign says 46% of the funds raised to date have been contributed by Nevadans (not including her personal money — if that is included, it brings the percentage up to 64%).

Total Receipts for the entire campaign cycle:  $2,172,211

Harry Reid Up with Fact Check Page on Website

By Elizabeth Crum | 8:25 pm April 12th, 2010

The page names Sue Lowden twice and the other candidates not at all.

I can’t remember how this got on my radar, so the Hat Tip goes to whomever was first out with it in my Inbox.