The candidate with the most money does not always win. But there’s
no denying that money is a huge factor in races. So the first round
of campaign finance reports always proves interesting. Let’s take
Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval hauled in almost $3 million for his
re-election bid. Quite impressive.
And as the GOP’s titular head, he should immediately tithe at least
10% of that to the various Republican Party organizations to help
lesser-known and underfunded candidates. I’d suggest $100K to the
Nevada GOP, $25K each to the Washoe and Clark parties and $10K each
to the other 15 rural counties.
Sandoval, as the party’s top elected official, needs to stop
bleeding the local parties dry for his own re-election and instead
give them a shot in the arm – the way Sen. Harry Reid does for the
Sandoval’s running mate, Mark Hutchison, also hauled in a quite
impressive figure – some $850,000.
But money can’t buy you love. And Hutchison’s decidedly
non-conservative voting record in 2013 – including support for
ObamaCare and over $1 billion worth of tax hikes! – isn’t likely
to play well with conservatives who make up the bulk of the GOP
Plus his Republican opponent, Sue Lowden, is far better qualified for
the office he’s running for, which between sessions is focused on
tourism and economic development.
Democrat candidate for attorney general, Ross Miller, raised a ton in
2013 – and figured on smooth sailing all the way. But a credible GOP
challenger, Adam Laxalt, jumped into the race just before the
campaign reports were filed. And with no expected primary challenge,
Laxalt will have plenty of time to catch up.
By all accounts, Republican state senators drove away with dump
trucks loaded with cash, as well. They’re gonna need it.
Only three state senate seats are really in play this cycle, with
Democrats holding slim voter registration advantages in all three.
And Republicans need a clean sweep – with untested candidates up
against sitting legislators in two of them – to gain the majority in
the upper house.
In the hapless state Assembly, a number of moderate GOP incumbents
put up anemic lobbyist-fueled numbers, while their conservative
challengers posted sufficient figures to be considered credible and
The really bright light for the Right is conservative Assemblywoman
Michele Fiore. At around $85,000 raised, Fiore – a hell-raiser who
earned the best overall conservative voting record in the 2013
session – eclipsed that raised even by Assembly Minority Leader Pat
Take note, GOP candidates…it pays, literally, to stand on your
principles and rock the boat!
All in all, very good signs in the pre-primary money primary for
Republicans. Now if only they can refrain from their addiction to
never blowing an opportunity to blow an opportunity…