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Cheers and jeers for Nevada's Harry Reid

Democrat Senator Harry Reid of Nevada

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is no doubt divisive: Polls show that about half of Nevada voters don't like him. But it’s still surprising to see who's cheering and jeering him these days. (Though with the election a year away, there’s also plenty of time to change minds.)
CHEERING: Progressives who are thrilled with Reid’s announcement today that he’s backing the inclusion of a public option in the Senate’s healthcare legislation (see news video here),....

...although states would be able to opt out of it and it's unclear whether he has the votes to ward off a filibuster.
JEERING: Moderates who support a “trigger” plan — in which public health coverage would kick in only if private insurers failed to meet certain benchmarks — and think, like President Obama reportedly does, that it’s more likely to win over conservative Democrats and moderate Republicans.

OUR THOUGHTS: There's along way to go, but if Reid gets the public option into a final bill, it might help him woo progressives who’ve told pollsters they find him weak and ineffective. Those voters wouldn’t have cast ballots for the Republican TBD anyway. But they sure might stay home — there are plenty of other things to do in Las Vegas. 
CHEERING: The parents of embattled Nevada Sen. John Ensign, a Republican, who donated $4,800 to Reid. Some people think that smells funky, since Ensign’s been in political purgatory and Reid has declined to criticize him.  But father Mike Ensign is a former casino executive and Reid has long been a Friend of Gaming.

CHEERING: Casino magnate Steve Wynn, who recently ripped into the Obama administration’s economic policies but supports Reid’s reelection. “My friend of 40 years will protect Americans from this kind of foolishness,” Wynn said of the chief torchbearer for Obama's policies. (Did we mention Reid’s a Friend of Gaming?)

JEERING: Sue Lowden and her casino-owning husband, Paul, who once donated thousands to Reid. Lowden is considered the front-runner among a gaggle of Republicans who’d like to elbow out the majority leader, as the GOP did in 2004 to Tom Daschle, the previous Democratic majority leader.

OUR THOUGHTS: When you’re polling as low as Reid, being a Friend of Gaming might not be enough.

CHEERING: Rock god/humanitarian Bono, who gave a shout-out to Reid last week during U2’s Las Vegas concert.

JEERING: No one. Bono’s awesome.

OUR THOUGHTS: Bono got 40,000 people to sing "Viva Las Vegas." You think he could push through a public option?

— Ashley Powers

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Photo: Associated Press
Comments () | Archives (11)

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That's GAMBLING, not GAMING. Let the casinos do their own public relations.

Cheers for Reid. He is standing on principal. Doing the right thing. Being courageous. It may cost him his job, he knows it, but damn the torpedoes and full steam ahead. Go Harry! Remember this guy was a boxer. He is tough. Doing the right thing isn't always popular, this man is showing his inner steel, standing for the little guy not the corporations and the well healed.

I like and support Reid and will support the public option.

Medical insurance will out of reach for most of us in a few years if something is not done to ring in the insurance companies. They waste money on administration and executives salary, bonuses and stock options than we can afford.
Now when we go to the doctor for an appointment, they give us a paper with all our drugs on it to see if any has changed--The doctor has that information and when we get in there with him in his office he goes over the medicines or changes them which ever is appropiate.

Why do we need for someone to photo copy our medicines and then have the doctor check them out during the visit.

It runs up the cost and the profits are based on the wasteful stuff, just like the necessary stuff.

This article is a lie. "Moderates" are not jeering Reid. The "bought off" are jeering Reid. That is, those bought and owned by the insurance and pharmaceutical industry.

The good news is that (from most reliable polls) 55%+ of Americans, 60%+ doctors & 65%+ nurses are CHEERING loudly.

This is a step in the right direction for the majority of Americans and a blow to the insurance and pharmaceutical industries and their proxies.

And the good news for those jeering is that their States can opt out if they like!! I'll believe that when I see it!!

I live in Nevada and I'm a moderate Democrat. I personally am proud of Reid, and have no doubt I'll be voting for him. I think he's doing a great job in a tough environment.

Doesn't matter what groups say what. This guy has caused more damage to this county than any outside force would ever be allowed to do! This guy has to go. He has been there way too long and is absolutely out of touch with the real America. He want's all this European liberal stuff, he can move to France. I'm sure they would love to have him.

Bring on Sue Lowden!

What nobody seems to realize is that the only money anybody has is the money they either inherit, steal, or earn. It is from this money that healthcare is funded. Right now healthcare for everyone is paid for by "those who can pay"--the working and the reasonably comfortable--why this group would campaign so diligently to continue to pay for everyone (and all DO have healthcare--you didn't step over a single dead body on your way to work today) totally escapes me. If a man works a man he need to pay him at least enough so that he can continue to work him. This means enough to buy health care. Now were the employer to think it through he would realize that he, the employer, can buy in bulk--and that his net cost will be lower if HE buys the health care--but if he wants to pay enough so that the employee can seek his own--so be it. For those without work WE will have to continue to foot the bill--but if we can get the working who are now uninsured off our backs the load will be lighter--those who work--and can't furnish an insurance number should see their Medicare deduction increased to the rate necessary to provide this service. This isn't rocket science.

It is about time. CONGRATULATION !!!!! Senator Harry Reid

Who is the brain dead writer of this opinion piece?


It's time to leave congress. You are doing a horrible job. I hope Nevada comes to their senses and elects someone that can represent all people of Nevada...

Yeah, Harry's done a great job, alright... if you like a steady diet of socialist ideology, anti-military diatribes and over taxation. Personally, I've had enough of Obama, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi and the rest of these radical con artists. Sue Lowden will be a refreshing CHANGE.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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