(Chuck Muth) – When it comes to blowing smoke up your skirt, no one in the Nevada Republican Party has been better at it than Chairman Chris Comfort. But the act is getting old. Sooner or later you have to provide more than rhetoric and platitudes. You have to produce actual results.
That day of reckoning for Comfort is right around the corner.
Despite having been in office for over four months now, Comfort continues to obsess over Harry Reid. His communications operation simply regurgitates RNC press releases slamming Harry while Harry’s son Rory, running for governor and overseeing the disaster known as the Clark County Commission, gets a free pass.
Making matters worse, the party hired a full-time Communications Director over two weeks ago, and anyone who knows Ciara Turns, a fire-breathing former conservative talk-show hostess, knows she’s no shrinking violet. Frankly, she’s a ball-buster – and the fact that she’s not out there busting Rory’s balls every day indicates that Comfort either doesn’t have his priorities straight or is trying to micro-manage the operation.
In the meantime, the party has failed to file quality candidates for various legislative seats currently being held by Democrat incumbents, or has filled many of those seats with B-team candidates. As of yesterday, there are virtually no experienced, known GOP candidates running for attorney general, secretary of state or state controller. And the filing deadline is tomorrow.
In addition, Comfort provided no party presence, guidance or assistance to GOP legislators during the recently concluded special session. Not only wasn’t Comfort at the table, he wasn’t even in the room. Or the building. Or for that matter, in the city.
There’s been, to the best of my knowledge, only one fundraising event (RNC Chairman Michael Steel was the guest) since Comfort took the reins. And the state convention, which was supposed to be held in April, was postponed because Comfort failed to secure a venue in time.
Meanwhile, Rory Reid and Democratic legislative leaders continue to pummel Gov. Jim Gibbons and Republicans over budget and other issues while Comfort feeds the press “happy talk” and spin about how the GOP is more united than ever and one big kumbaya party. His appearance on Jon Ralston “Face to Face” program opposite Democrat Party Communications Director Phoebe Sweet was just short of embarrassing.
As was his self-serving press statements that a tightening of voter registration numbers by some 20,000 voters last month was due to some national wave of joy for Republicans rather than the reality of a scheduled voter registration “purge” by the election department, which relegated Comfort to laughing-stock status among the media and veteran political operatives.
And exactly what is he doing about this new Tea Party of Nevada threat? His public dismissal of them as being virtually irrelevant despite some half-dozen high-profile GOP losses in recent years by margins less than the number of votes cast for conservative third-party candidates borders on clinical denial.
Finally, the John Ensign scandal, which only gets worse and worse, threatens GOP candidates in Nevada up and down the ballot in 2010. Yet Chairman Comfort continues to stand by his man even though his man has done nothing for the party over the last dozen years unless it benefitted him personally or politically. Why continue to defend the indefensible? The time to throw that man overboard is long overdue.
With the political winds blowing “right”-ward right now, all of this under the leadership(?) of Chairman Comfort amounts to yet another major blown opportunity for the party which never seems to miss an opportunity to blow an opportunity. And I’m hearing rumblings that party regulars and Central Committee members are tiring of it very quickly.
In fact, I smell mutiny in the air.