(Chuck Muth) – When it comes to criticizing Republicans, Democrats are pikers compared to me; however, now would be a good time to give a little credit where credit is due. And the Nevada GOP is showing not only some signs of life, but political competence as well.
Exhibit A is the party’s recent special meeting in Sparks to select its nominee for the Second Congressional District race scheduled for this September. And while the Nevada Supreme Court could still throw a monkey wrench into the process, the selection of Mark Amodei was made without bitterness or rancor or even too much soapbox pontificating by the usual gaggle of gadflies.
Ditto the election of a new party chairman to replace Amodei. After it was announced that Amy Tarkanian had been elected, her opponent, Patrick McNaught, showed considerable class by immediately making a motion for the committee to elect Tarkanian by unanimous consent. Which it did.
Indeed, the entire meeting was conducted by acting Chairman Sherry Dilley with a level of efficiency and competence not usually associated with the GOP….but why bring up the 2008 convention again, right? (Oops)
By the way, the Nevada GOP also reportedly has several thousand dollars already in the bank.
In addition, the party landed and will host the Western Republican Leadership Conference at the Venetian in Las Vegas next October….and if they’re not careful, they might be able to use the February presidential caucus to wipe out the Democrats’ voter registration advantage which they gained using their own caucus in 2008.
Meanwhile, over in the state Senate, conservatives now rule the roost and Sen. Michael Roberson was recently tapped to head up the caucus’ campaign operation next year.
This job has been handled, almost unilaterally, by moderate Sen. Bill Raggio in the past. That the caucus leadership has enough confidence in itself to task this critically important slot to a freshman conservative who is not in leadership says a lot about how fast and far these Republicans have moved beyond the Raggio era.
And while Gov. Sandoval still has some fence-mending to do with conservatives over breaking both his promise not to extend the sunsets and to roll back general fund spending to the 2007 level, there’s no outright “RINO Revolt” festering in the grassroots the way there was against Gov. Guinn in 2003.
Sen. Dean Heller is well-positioned – showing only slightly behind his Democrat opponent, Shelley Berkley, in early polling – while Rep. Joe Heck seemingly gets stronger in his district with each passing attack by the Democrats. Indeed, other than the continued incompetence by Republicans in the state assembly, Nevada Republicans are looking pretty darned good these days.
If only they don’t blow it. Alas, a big *if* if history is a guide.