(Chuck Muth) – While candidates up and down the ballot are complaining about Mother Hubbard’s fundraising cupboard being bare, Republican state senate candidate Patrick McNaught kicked off his campaign for the District 12 seat with a bang last night at the M.
McNaught is seeking to replace Sen. Warren Hardy (R-Clark County) – who earlier this year broke his Taxpayer Protection Pledge to the voters of his district to oppose and vote against any and all efforts to raise taxes by voting for over a billion dollars worth of higher taxes and spending.
Assemblyman Joe Hardy (R-Boulder City) is also running for this seat. Joe Hardy voted for the largest single tax hike in Nevada history in 2003, and followed that up by voting for a $292 million tax hike this session. He also chalked up an anemic 34 percent on this year’s Conservative Rating of the Legislature conducted by Citizen Outeach.
Warren Hardy has endorsed Joe Hardy (the two, however, are unrelated). Sen. Bill Raggio and the Senate Republican Caucus has endorsed Joe Hardy. And the “old guard” of lobbyists and traditional donors have also fallen in line and thrown their support to the RINO (Republican in Name Only) from Boulder City.
Which made last night’s turnout at McNaught’s $250/person kickoff fundraising reception all the more impressive.
You see, of the 150-plus folks who attended the event, I didn’t recognize more than a half-dozen known political acivists/donors/lobbyists in the crowd. They were almost all new faces, relatively young (30’s and 40’s), professional….and apparently getting involved in politics for the first time on behalf of McNaught.
Among the new faces were Mike and Nancy Archambault, Perry and Rena Dau, Craig Eddins, Bob Massi (yep, the Fox News contributor), Phil Ralston (not related to Jon), Troy and Judy Watson, Lazelle Hottentot, Gregg Schnifframer, Steve Grant, Chet and Amber Opheikens, Heidi Bretthauer, Ian Feldman, Scott and Crystal Thurman, Sue Ullrich, Skip and Carol Marvick, Wally Emery, Ellen Fahr, Craig Brown, Phil Cherry, Scott and Shay McClean, Brad and Wendy Schnepf….oh, and one 9-year-old princess named Kristen Muth.
Nevada’s Republican Party establishment and the Carson City lobbying corps jumped onto the Joe Hardy bandwagon early and bet big. Maybe too early and too big.
Because if Tuesday night’s out-of-the-gate turnout in support of Patrick McNaught is any indication of the kind of support he’s likely to get from a GOP primary electorate tired of the tax-and-spend ways of liberal Republicans like Joe Hardy, they may have bet their money on a nag. Perhaps now would be a good time to cover their bets.