March 21, 2007

Better Know a Candidate - Candidate Update

The Carson City event featuring Joe Biden, originally scheduled for this evening, has been cancelled. It will be rescheduled and I will keep you posted.

The SEIU presidential forum this weekend in Las Vegas will feature Democratic candidates, Hillary Clinton, Chris Dodd, John Edwards, Dennis Kucinich, Barack Obama and Bill Richardson.

Karen Tumulty, National Political Correspondent for TIME, will moderate the forum and ask the candidates questions about the issue, giving them a platform to discuss how they will address our nation’s health care crisis. With nearly 47 million Americans uninsured – including 9 million children – and millions more underinsured or facing bankruptcy due to medical costs, few issues will be as important to Americans in the 2008 presidential election as health care coverage.

I don't think it will be televised, but perhaps it will be on C-SPAN. I'll check.

We've got National House Parties
John Edwards - March 28th - Here's one in Winnemucca
Barack Obama
- March 31st - Lyon County has one in Fernley.

Meetup Groups
Dennis Kucinich
Barack Obama

Digging Deeper
C-SPAN's Road to the White House archive (video links)

1 comment:

FIT GRAD said...

I am so sorry for this long and off-topic comment, but I feel the only way one citizen can be heard loudly enough is to ask my fellow blog commenters for help…so here goes…

It’s time to put Nevada’s kids before our state’s special interest lobby. It really comes down to kids versus casino profits. A proposal for a state lottery has failed 24 times since 1975, and the people have never gotten the chance to decide. Now the time has come!

With the state facing budget shortfalls, tremendous growth, and no desire to increase the tax burden on the working family, I believe a lottery is one of the answers to the question of how we should improve education.

The state constitution must be amended to approve a state lottery, which means the people have the final vote. The first hurdle was cleared again this year when the State Assembly passed a bi-partisan resolution authorizing a lottery. But, why haven’t the people had the final say in the past 32 years? Just follow the money.

It is estimated that a state lottery (which 42 other states have) would be able to generate between 50 to 200 million dollars a year. This money, that the approved Assembly resolution dictates, would be earmarked for public school students in the form of textbooks and other educational materials. Why not approve millions for textbooks and supplies in the past 32 years? Just follow the money.

With 73% of Nevadans favoring a lottery, why would it not pass on this the 25th attempt? Namely, because five State Senators who sat on the Judiciary Committee and voted it down two years ago, remain on the committee this current legislative session. Just follow the money for your reason why they don’t support it.

At the Assembly hearing, in which the resolution passed, Boyd Gaming and Station Casinos argued that 595 jobs would be lost if the state had a lottery. I argue that the casino industry is resilient. They have overcoming a post 9/11 travel slump, and they have overcoming the threat of federal regulations and taxes, and they will over come this. They receive millions in room tax revenue to promote their industry and when they claimed the sky was falling because of the legalization of gaming in Atlantic City, they bounced back and embrace these new markets and thus enhanced their profits.

As we all know, the gaming industry has long controlled the Nevada legislature through political donations and the best lobbyists money can buy. If you would like to know why the lottery would fail, it is because of they fear the lost revenues, and they have invested millions in political donations.

The five state senators on the judiciary committee that voted last year against allowing the people to decide if our state has a lottery are: Mark Amodei (Chair, R-Carson City), Maurice Washington (Vice Chair, R-Washoe), Mike McGinness (R-Central NV), Dennis Nolan (R-Clark,) and Terry Care (D-Clark).

Just this past election cycle, the Senate Judiciary Chairman, Mark Amodei (email: mamodei@sen.state.nv.us) received $5,000 from both Boyd Gaming and Stations Casino, not to mention $5,000 from MGM/Mirage and Harrahs, throw in another $7,500 from IGT, $2,500 from LV Sands, and a thousand each from Herbst Gaming, the Peppermill, and Atlantis, and you get his $33,000 picture.

The Vice Chairman of the committee, Maurice Washington (email: mwashington@sen.state.nv.us), also received $5,000 from Boyd Gaming, Stations Casinos, MGM/Mirage, Michael Gaughn and Harrahs. That $25,000 is just the tip of his iceberg!

Combine this with Senator Dennis Nolan (email: dnolan@sen.state.nv.us) who received $5,000 from Stations in cash and $15,000 from the Stardust and Encore of in-kind donations (plus $13,000+ from other gamers); and with Senator Mike McGinness’ (email: mmcginness@sen.state.nv.us) combined donation of $5,000 from Stations and Boyd and the $20,000 in donations from other gamers….and you know why our kids don’t stand a chance.

The fifth senator that voted against the lottery during the past session is Terry Care (email: tcare@sen.state.nv.us) and his political contribution sheet for this past election is not available from the Sectary of State’s website.

So let’s just review the four senators’ who available information was on-line: From the companies who lobbied against the lottery, Stations Casinos and Boyd Gaming, they gave a combined total of $45,000 in campaign contributions, now add the other gamers and you’ve got at least $120,000 working against our kids with just four senators.

These Senators have got to hear from the people that elected them, not just the special interest that financed their campaign. It is not a North/South or Republican/Democrat issue…it is an issue about our kids, our state’s future, and our need to lesson the tax burden on working families.

Please let these five senators hear from you. You can email or you can leave a message for any member of the Senate Judiciary Committee or ask to be connected to a specific legislator….Reno/Sparks/Carson: 684-6789, Las Vegas (toll free) 486-2626, Toll Free: 1-800-486-2626, 1-800-995-9080. Tell them “We the people” want to decide about a state lottery and that special interests have no place at the table for this discussion. Be angry, be mad, and fight for our kids!

-Just a Kid from Vegas