(Mike Zahara) – As more and more of the grown-ups in the state are preparing themselves and accepting Senator Harry Reid being badly defeated and bringing down the local Democratic ticket in 2010, there’s at least one person who’s contemplating changes when she takes the crown and scepter of the Nevada State Democratic Party: Representative Shelley Berkley.
Because Nevada is such a politically immature state, and because Democrats are loaded with tens of thousands of super-marginal voters that paid operatives are forced to go out and sign up, but who will likely never vote, the opportunity to change course after Harry Reid is defeated may get a big boost from Berkley’s larger-than-life persona.
Though a sharp-witted hack and Gaming shill for her entire congressional career, you can’t argue that voters love Berkley’s outrageousness and Barbie doll, let’s-play-dress-up qualities; those qualities endear her to regular voters and partisans alike.
She’s very much Oscar Goodman in pantyhose and sparkly shoes.
At about a year out, some are beginning to dream out loud about how refreshingly different things will be when Harry Reid is ousted, and the prospect that thousands of local Democrats may work to affect tossing Harry Reid out to directly benefit Shelley Berkley is very real.
Being the Queen of Nevada is the perfect role; today she is a regnant-in-waiting in Reid’s shadow, but with the whole magilla in her sites, the lefties that love her are now considering what the next step is for NVDEMS in a political world without Harry Reid.
Obviously, defeating Reid is paramount for many partisan Dems given his abysmal record over 41 years in public life, and that he has no support from the state party’s far-left wing, makes it a much easier proposition to show him the electoral door. Of course they’ll say all the correct things publicly, but what they do behind the scenes and in the privacy of their voting booth will likely signal how Harry Reid’s expected defeat came about.
Should he go down, it will be because he lost a major chunk of his own party and thousands of Dems will have seen that exercising his corrupted influences from the party far outweighed what little benefit he has brought to it over 41 years of his iron-fisted party control that only focused on his elections and his political power.
There are a few things she’ll likely do within days of the results being known next November; one is that she will install her own people within NVDEMS, and eventually, her own state party chair.
Such an embarrassing national defeat will have to lead to heads rolling on south Valley View if donors are to be placated and dead-weight there extricated. The 2-3 people she would likely support as NVDEMS chair won’t be reformers at all, but they will bring something different to the organization. Executive Director, Travis Brock is likely to be the first person fired with Rebbeca Lambe-Jolley right behind him; partisan Democrats across the state will rejoice as none have any faith in either, and the new Queen will have solidified her position with them to do as she wishes with the party.
Neither can survive if Shelley Berkley is to succeed as party leader.
A post-Reid Democratic Party will be the best thing that ever happened to partisan Democrats in Nevada; the opportunity to breathe and grow into a matured organization that isn’t one single-candidate oriented any longer, is the logical desired outcome of Harry Reid’s expected and welcomed defeat.
Whereas Harry Reid engenders harsh derision even from hard party partisans, the state’s political activists are likely to very warmly embrace Berkley heading the party as a welcome repose and opportunity.
In the big blue states, many different wings make up their state party apparatuses, and we’re about a decade away from that being even remotely possible in Nevada, but Berkley’s presence may help expedite a newly respected, matured political organization regardless that NVDEMS ranks near the very bottom of state party organizations nationally today.
There is no organization at all; they have to pay people to like them, to register them to vote, and to support them now; yes, it’s gotten that bad for Nevada’s Democrats today.
What Shelley Berkley adds to NVDEMS is the street cred that Harry Reid does not and never did have.
She’s going to have to include the Reno-Carson City region as the party’s next great opportunity. Clark County was responsible for Dem success this past decade, but the state’s Northwest region is ground-zero for both parties and Berkley will have to recruit and develop likable, electable Democrats from the Northlands who can win statewide elections, to achieve a political balance of power that is no longer as Clark-centric as it is today.
She may be able to pull it off, in fact, I would bet on her making a yeoman’s effort toward those ends.
It is unlikely that she will run for US Senate in 2012 as a grueling statewide race would have a detrimental effect on her very poor health. She is also very aware that those regent races she won in a bygone era in Nevada, were non-partisan races and that she would definitely suffer the same rejection Jill Derby earned twice up north and that brought Rep Dina Titus down in 2006.
The US Senate is fun to contemplate for political people, but Berkley is much too savvy to be seduced into risking everything on one race she would likely lose, instead of consolidating her power with what she already firmly controls and an elective office she can’t ever lose.
Shelley Berkley knows she can’t ever win a statewide race, but she can do some good things by remaining in place in the US House and controlling NVDEMS until she retires out.
A cleansing and disinfecting of NVDEMS of the malodorous ruins of the party’s corrupted top candidate will position Representative Shelley Berkley better than she’s ever been positioned for anything in her entire life.
Elections are never about one single person or one single race; that’s political narcissism and selfishness that presents itself that that is fact, when nothing could be further from the truth. Elections are about opportunities for the future and sometimes that requires very necessary defeats to move everyone else forward.
Those supporters in Shelley Berkley’s orbit are beginning to realize that salient fact lately and are seeing the many opportunities they’ll have depending on how they touch that screen next November.
It is well within the realm of possibilities that they’ll be supporting Representative Shelley Berkley in two races when they touch the screen next year.