Three days later and the steam is still coming out of my ears and wanted you to be among the first to know about this…
In order to name a natural feature after someone, there are two ways to go about it: Citizens may submit a naming proposal to the Board on Geographic Names or Members of Congress can introduce a bill. And because Congress is so special, any naming proposal it puts forward takes precedence over any proposal put forward by citizens.
As you probably know, we’ve been actively pursuing establishing an official Mt. Reagan in Nevada since 2010, and submitted a formal proposal to the Nevada Board on Geographic Names in Reno to name the unnamed peak at the top of Frenchman Mountain to the east of Las Vegas this past January.
We had our first formal hearing last May at the board’s meeting in Dayton and made a full presentation on the merits of our proposal, including email and paper petitions in support of the proposal, as well as extensive information documenting Reagan’s worthiness for such an honor. We also addressed objections to the naming proposal submitted by Democrat Clark County Commissioner Chris Giunchigliani.
Our second hearing was on September 10th in Reno. At that meeting, we were advised that a liberal online petition campaign had been launched that weekend and that the board chairwoman had received a hundred or so template emails of opposition. The board considered and discussed the email opposition campaign but nevertheless approved “Mt. Reagan” by a vote of 5-2.
At that point, the Nevada board’s recommendation was submitted to the national Board on Geographic Names in Washington, DC for final action and possible official approval. We were halfway there…and prospects, with the Nevada’s board’s OK, looked good.
So on Wednesday, Paul Smith – a supporter of the project from Massachusetts who has hiked to the top of “Mt. Reagan” and attended and testified at all of the Nevada hearings – arranged for the two of us to meet with the director of the Reagan Presidential Foundation at the Reagan Library in Simi Valley, CA to brief her on the status of the project as it moved to the national level.
It was a great, positive meeting…and a wonderful experience seeing the Library again, despite a very dark development the night before.
You see, in light of the meeting with the Reagan Library folks, I had shot an email the day before inquiring on the status of the national board’s agenda to see if our proposal had been scheduled for consideration yet. The email I received from the Nevada board’s chairwoman in response dropped me like a brick…
“Chuck, we have learned that there is a competing name proposal for the same peak on Frenchman Mountain. Please check out > https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/113/hr3440
“We were not aware of this bill when I sent in the statement from the NV Board and, when learning about it, was not sure if this was the same peak/point on Frenchman’s Mountain but the US Board has just informed us that it is. The bill takes priority over a nomination coming through a state board.
“You are likely as stunned as we are; this is the first situation like this I have seen in my several decades on the NV Board. I understand that the US Board must now suspend any further action on your proposal pending outcome of the bill. You could contact the US Board for any further information as this is beyond our jurisdiction.”
Indeed, on October 30, 2013 – seven weeks after the Nevada Board on Geographic Names approved our proposal to name the peak on top of Frenchman Mountain “Mount Reagan” and forwarded the state recommendation to the national board – Rep. Dina Titus (D-Nevada) submitted a competing proposal in Congress to name the same peak “Maude Frazier Mountain,” which essentially kills our citizen proposal through the administrative process.
The national board’s hands are now tied and they can do absolutely nothing on our Mt. Reagan proposal as long as Titus’ bill is before Congress.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying Frazier – who you likely have never heard of – isn’t deserving of being honored, especially as the state’s first woman lieutenant governor. But she should get her own mountain or other natural feature; not the one the Nevada Board on Geographic Names already approved for President Reagan!
This cheap shot is as petty, partisan and politically vindictive as you’ll ever see. She didn’t even have the courtesy and decency to tell us about the stunt she was pulling.
Make no mistake, no one, including Rep. Titus, had any interest in this mountain peak until we suggested it as an honor for President Reagan. You and I did the hard work, followed the process and played by the rules. And look where that got us.
Yeah, I’m pretty ticked off. But I’m not throwing in the towel.
I have a conference call scheduled for Monday morning with some of the folks in DC who have been extremely supportive of this project since Day One. I’ll keep you posted on our plans.
When it comes to colossal product launch flops, you’d be hard pressed to top the epic fail of “new” Coke. People perfectly content with “the real thing” had no interest whatsoever in the product despite a massive marketing and PR campaign. The lesson: When something works, don’t fix it.
And while the jury’s still out on whether or not it’s a bigger flop than “new” Coke, it’s undeniable that the October rollout of the Chosen One’s health care boondoggle has also been a colossal failure of epic proportions.
And I’m not just talking about the bug-plagued HealthCare.gov website. Indeed, the website problems can and will likely be fixed – probably by a team of ten-year-olds taking a break from Call of Duty.
Alas, the website catastrophe is likely to be ObamaCare’s high water mark. Because there’s no way on God’s green earth to put enough lipstick on this pig.
And if you think the outcry against this program has been big and noisy now, you ain’t seen nuthin’ compared to the revolt coming once businesses…which have been granted a one-year extension on implementing this turd-in-the-punchbowl…start dropping existing employee health care plans and forcing people into ObamaCare against their will.
Not since “Read my lips, no new taxes” has a president been caught telling the American people a whopper as big as “If you like your plan, you can keep it.” Indeed, I predict voters will be heading to the polls next November with virtual pitchforks and torches in hand.
Only Republicans, who never blow an opportunity to blow an opportunity, could possibly blow this opportunity.
Meanwhile, in what is presently the only competitive congressional race in Nevada, the Democrats’ Golden Girl, CD-3 candidate Erin Bilbray-Kohn, who should have come out of the gate like Seattle Slew, instead stumbled out like Francis the Talking Mule (ask your grandma).
Bilbray-Kohn has been training Democrat candidates for years and was lining up financial support for months before officially announcing her challenge to Rep. Joe Heck (R-Nevada) back in July. Yet on Day One of her coming out party, Bilbray-Kohn slammed Heck for casting a vote that Heck never cast. It was actually a vote cast by fellow Democrat Rep. Dina Titus.
And it’s been all downhill since…including a rather anemic third-quarter fundraising total for a candidate running in a Top Five battleground race who had been lining up financial support for at least six months prior.
Also during the first three months of her “official” campaign, Bilbray-Kohn refused to do media interviews. When she finally did her first big one in October, she called Rep. Heck – a military surgeon in the United States Army – “un-American,” while simultaneously accusing him of being anti-woman, an absurd charge completely debunked even by liberal reporters and columnists.
Now that those attacks have backfired, the campaign has switched gears and is now attacking Heck on the immigration issue. But again, it’s the self-professed liberal media that has come to Heck’s defense, debunking the myth that Heck is some kind of Mexican-hating white supremacist.
I mean, things are so bad so early in the Bilbray-Kohn campaign these days that Democrats have had to trot out their Big Gun early. No less than Sen. Harry Reid himself is now fully engaged in the effort to salvage and jump-start Bilbray-Kohn’s “new” Coke campaign.
Reid is not only out there sniping at Heck in media interviews in both the nation’s capital and Nevada – he actually said Las Vegas Review-Journal columnist Steve Sebelius’ defense of Heck on the immigration attacks made him want to “vomit” – but he’s begging for dollars hoping to prop up the Golden Girl’s fourth-quarter fundraising report before the end of the year.
Oh, and by the way, Bilbray-Kohn is now running from ObamaCare like a scalded dog!
While it’s true that “new” Coke is still the inter-galactic leader of colossal rollout failures, ObamaCare is giving it a real run for its money, and the Bilbray-Kohn campaign is right on its heels. Don’t be surprised to see voters reject both with extreme prejudice next November.
Under what presently passes for “leadership” in the Republican Assembly caucus, it will again be impossible for the GOP to gain a Republican majority next year; however, the developing conservative uprising in Nevada – “Conservageddon!” – could well result in a new (and desperately needed) conservative majority in the Republican Assembly caucus.
And who knows…
If Senate Minority Leader Moderate Mike Roberson is dethroned in his own GOP primary next June to conservative Carl Bunce, perhaps some wayward Republicans in the upper house – particularly Sens. Mark Hutchison, Greg Brower, Pete Goicoechea and Scott Hammond (forget Joe Hardy and Ben Kieckhefer; they’re hopeless RINOs) – will rediscover their “inner Reagans” and move back to the right, as well.
Indeed, if Roberson is ousted, Senate Republicans might even tap veteran conservative State Sen. James Settelmeyer to be their new caucus leader. Rightwarrrrd, ho!!
And even at the state level, if Republican Sue Lowden wins the lieutenant governor race…
And Republican Barbara Cegavske wins the secretary of state race…
And Republican Dan Schwartz wins the race for state treasurer…
And Republican Adam Laxalt gets in, as rumored, and wins the attorney general race (PLEASE!)…
And former Republican Assemblyman Ron Knecht wins the controller race…
It’ll be a whole lot tougher for Gov. Brian “BS” Sandoval (R&R-Partners) to continue raising taxes, implementing ObamaCare, giving driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants, and growing government in general.
But it’s at the state Assembly level that Nevada tea party and liberty movement conservatives are really starting to flex their political muscles and could have a ginormous impact at the ballot box next year depending on how some primaries go.
Here’s an updated run-down…
The following conservative and conservative-leaning GOP incumbents are likely to hold onto their seats: Assemblywoman Michele Fiore and Assemblymen John Ellison, Ira Hansen, James Oscarson, Wes Duncan, Pete Livermore and John Hambrick.
It also looks like Assemblyman Jim Wheeler has successfully weathered his recent “macaca” moment and is in position to hold onto his seat, as well. But even if he comes up short, his announced primary opponent, Robin Reedy, is also a pretty solid conservative. So that makes eight.
In District 38, moderate Assemblyman Tom Grady is likely to be replaced by conservative Dr. Robin Titus. That’s nine.
Establishment moderate Assemblyman Randy “Kirner Tax” Kirner (RINO-Kirner Tax) has drawn two conservative opponents – Lisa Krasner and Robb Archie. That could be ten if the two conservatives don’t (foolishly) split the anti-Gumby/RINO vote and re-elect the Father of the Kirner Tax.
In Clark County, Assemblyman Cresent Hardy is running for Congress, and word on the street is that moderate Assemblywoman Melissa Woodbury will not run for re-election. Both are solid GOP seats that could and should go to solid conservative candidates. That would make twelve.
In District 22, the most liberal incumbent Republican assemblyman, Lynn Stewart, will face liberty movement leader Richard Bunce in the primary. That would make 13.
In District 29, it appears Amy Groves, a solid, pro-business conservative, will make a strong run in this very competitive swing district. That could make 14.
In District 31, if conservative Jill Dickman wins her GOP primary race against Bob Larkin, an establishment GOP tax-lover, she’ll have an excellent chance to unseat Democrat incumbent Assemblyman Skip Daly in this Republican-majority district.
That would make 15…a solid conservative bloc which would have the power to stop any and all efforts to increase taxes, including yet another extension of those “temporary” sunsets that Gov. Sandoval loves so much.
Remember then-Assemblyman Bob Beers’ “Lean 15” from 2003? Bring on the sequel!!
Heck, with a conservative majority like that, maybe even establishment moderate Assemblyman Paul Anderson will rediscover his own “inner Reagan.” That’d be a “sweet 16.”
But here’s the potential coup de grace.
In District 25, moderate establishment Minority Leader Pat Hickey has now drawn a serious conservative opponent in the primary. If Hickey goes down in flames to conservative Rick Fineberg, we could not only end up with a new conservative majority in the Republican Assembly caucus, we could end up with a true conservative opposition leader, as well!
No more table scraps! No more table scraps!
Of course, a lot of things will need to break the GOP’s way in November (hello, ObamaCare train wreck!) and Republicans will have to overcome their propensity for never blowing an opportunity to blow an opportunity. But the opportunities are definitely there for the taking.
Conservatives challenging moderates in Republican primaries.
Just like Ronald Reagan vs. Gerald Ford in 1976.
Bring on CONSERVAGEDDON!
So let it be written; so let it be done.
Conservative lieutenant governor candidate Sue Lowden recently exposed her GOP opponent’s hypocrisy in filing a lawsuit to block ObamaCare as a private citizen but then voting three times to implement it once elected to the Legislature.
That apparently got Sen. Mark Hutchison’s dander up, as he lashed out at Lowden in an interview with the Mesquite Citizen Journal
In response, Hutchison said “It is ludicrous for my opponent to suggest that I support Obamacare. After two Republican governors appointed me to represent Nevada because our Democrat Attorney General refused to do so, I fought all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court this ill-conceived law without taking a dime from taxpayers.
“The first two bills my opponent refers to were unanimously voted on by all Republican Senators, and the third bill was the governor’s budget supported by the majority of the Republican Senators. All three bills were signed into law by the Governor.
“I might ask my opponent, other than attacking me, the Republican Senators, and Governor Sandoval, what has she done to fight against Obamacare? The answer is nothing.
“When Nevadans needed someone to champion their constitutional rights, I stepped up. I represented the state pro bono because I felt so strongly about stopping this intrusive and dangerous federal law. My opponent’s shallow, Washington-style attack on me, my senate colleagues, and the Governor is a sad way to start a campaign.”
Sounds like somebody’s awful defensive. Lowden must have really struck a nerve.
1.) Lowden didn’t say Hutchison supports ObamaCare. She simply pointed out the hypocrisy of voting to implement the law he sued to block.
2.) What did Lowden do to fight ObamaCare? She spent $2 million of her own money in an effort to oust Sen. Harry Reid, the architect of ObamaCare, that’s what. And I’m guessing that far exceeded the value of Hutch’s pro bono work.
3.) As for most of his Republican colleagues also voting to implement ObamaCare, recall what our mothers drilled into us as kids: “Just because everybody else jumps off a bridge doesn’t mean you should?”
4.) Lowden didn’t attack Hutchison. She attacked his voting record. That’s fair game. As the saying goes, “It’s not negative to tell the truth about your opponent.”
Here’s another inconvenient truth: It appears Sen. Hutchison doesn’t take criticism very well.
If the reception he received at the Washoe County GOP dinner in Reno is any indication, rumors of conservative Assemblyman Jim Wheeler’s (R-Northern Nevada) political death have been wildly exaggerated. From a report by Ray Hagar of the Reno Gazette-Journal…
The best part of the Washoe County Republican annual dinner Monday was when various GOP candidates stood in line and one by one, introduced themselves to the crowd.
Embattled Assemblyman Jim Wheeler, R-Minden, got a rock star ovation. Or in this case, a Johnny Cash-like ovation.
Wheeler has been vilified locally and nationally for his “slavery” comments, when he said he’d vote for slavery if that is what his constituents wanted and they held a gun to his head.
But with this crowd, his tribulations seemingly increased his popularity, even if privately, some told me his comments make Nevada Republicans look stupid.
After Wheeler said, “Good evening, I’m the infamous assemblyman from District 39,” the crowd roared. He got a bigger ovation that Lt. Gov. candidate Sue Lowden and hers was pretty big.
Wheeler then referred to an earlier comment from candidate Jill Dickman, who is running as a Republican in Sparks’ District 31. That’s the district of incumbent Skip Daly, D-Hey, bring it, Jill.
“As Jill said, we get kind of tired with people running on a platform (of conservatism) and then changing their votes when they get up there (to Legislature in Carson City),” Wheeler said. “I think my record shows that I stayed conservative. And I’m not a politician, as you can tell by some of my really dumb statements.”
Good news for Wheeler, but let me give special credit to Ray Hagar here. He’s the only reporter I’ve seen so far who put the entire Wheeler comment about slavery into proper context by noting that Wheeler said he’d only vote for it with a gun to his head.
As I’ve noted again and again, there are a lot of horrific things each and every one of us would do with a gun to our heads. Hell, I’d even vote to re-elect Michael Roberson!
Good, professional job, Ray.
Republican lieutenant governor candidate Sue Lowden spoke at the annual Washoe County Republican Party dinner in Reno last week – the one boycotted by Gov. Brian “BS” Sandoval (R&R-Partners) and his running mate, Mark Hutchison.
Gotta love these remarks from Lowden, as reported by Ray Hagar of the Reno Gazette-Journal…
“I was chairman of (Senate) taxation and it was renamed the non-taxation committee and there was a reason for that. There was not one tax that came out of my committee. That was before Grover Norquist even knew to put a tax pledge in front of us. I knew instinctively that I had to protect your money. I knew instinctively that I had I had to be a good steward for the public money.”
Now contrast that with Hutchison’s record. In his first and only session in the state senate this year, Hutch voted for over $1 BILLION worth of higher taxes. That, ladies and gentleman, is what we call a clear contrast.
It is absolutely amazing how a serious primary challenge refocuses the mind of moderate Republicans. Take Nevada State Sen. Michael Roberson (please!).
The guy ran as a tea party conservative in 2010…then went RINO on us in 2012 once safely in office, proposing and supporting over $1 BILLION in tax hikes this year alone!
But now that he’s facing a credible and viable Republican challenger, liberty movement leader Carl Bunce, in next year’s primary contest, Moderate Mike is singing a different tune.
Despite voting three times this last legislative session to implement ObamaCare and expand Medicaid, Roberson suddenly this week issued a statement opposing the program – not coincidentally just as the public opinion winds and polls shifted against it.
To which Mr. Bunce issued the following statement on Thursday…
CARL BUNCE WELCOMES MICHAEL ROBERSON BACK TO THE CONSERVATIVE RANKS FOR THE MOMENT WHILE HE REVERSES HIS SUPPORT OF OBAMACARE
Henderson, NV – As Nevadans and others around the United States are trying to shake off the hangover of the flawed and misguided implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA); Carl Bunce noted that “many individuals are realizing for the first time that government mandates, no matter their good intentions do not work as intended, even if their websites eventually do.”
The conservative ranks have been fighting to stop the rollout of the PPACA since 2009, and it seems that Michael Roberson has finally learned that government interventions are unworkable after all, but this disingenuous “reversal” is nothing more than a political lifeline for Michael Roberson.
Michael Roberson has been complicit in the implementation of PPACA and the massive expansion of Medicaid welfare in Nevada with his “Yea” votes in Carson City, even though he could have voted against them as other conservative leaders did with principled opposition to the clearly flawed construction of the PPACA.
Bunce stated, “His recent opposition to government intervention in the market is welcomed, but it is a little too late to help his record of going along to get along with Obamacare.”
The current unintended consequences were predictable and are growing by the day. The first signs of fallout started when once full-time employees were getting their hours cut back to less than 30 hours to counter the insurance coverage mandate placed on employers with more than 50 calculated full-time employees.
Soon after the health exchanges opened for business, individuals starting getting letters from their current health insurance carriers, stating that they will no longer be able to provide coverage due to increased costs and regulation. The most ironic surprise for some is that the Affordable Health Care Act has actually increased premiums in Nevada by 179% across all age groups, and we have not even gotten to the tax penalty nightmares yet.
Moderate Mike fooled an awful lot of us in 2010. Will he get away with it again in 2014 with his born-again opposition to ObamaCare? And what other conservative principles will he soon again be paying lip-service to…at least until the primary is over?
In a New York Times story today, here’s how conservative Republican Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin explained his refusal to expand Medicaid…
“I said no, because if I took the Medicaid expansion I’d be dependent on the same federal government that can’t get a basic website up and going even after two and a half years to come through with payments for Medicaid in the future when they start weaning off paying for 100 percent of coverage.”
And here’s how conservative Republican Gov. Rick Perry of Texas explains his own opposition to expanding Medicaid…
“It’s like putting 1,000 more people on the Titanic when you knew what was going to happen.”
Added conservative Republican Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina on the matter…
“We didn’t just say no, we said never.”
Noted U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, Kentucky Republican…
“Many Republican governors I would say are conservative did resist expanding and accepting Obamacare in their states.”
Nevada Republican governor Brian “BS” Sandoval (R&R-Partners) expanded Medicaid, with the aid-and-comfort of all but four conservative GOP state legislators. Bring on Conservageddon!
As you all know, I’ve been referring to Jon Ralston as Nevada’s #2 liberal blogger for several weeks now. To explain who I think is the #1 liberal blogger in Nevada, let me share the following joke I received in an email a few weeks back.
According to the email, presidential historians recently declared that Jimmy Carter was the second best president in U.S. history.
Everyone else was tied for first!
And that, my friends, is why I refer to Ralston as Nevada’s #2 liberal blogger.
Yesterday morning we learned that Virginia State Senator Creigh Deeds had been stabbed in the head and chest by his son, Gus, 24, before Gus shot himself dead in the family home. Deeds was critically injured but made it to a hospital where his condition this morning was upgraded to fair.
And for that, we can be thankful.
However, yesterday afternoon the Washington Post reported that Gus had psychiatric problems and that on Monday a magistrate had ordered an evaluation. But the Deeds family reportedly live in “a very rural area” where “hospitals are few and far between,” so there wasn’t a bed to immediately take the boy.
But that didn’t stop Nevada State Sen. Justin Jones (D-Mayors Against Guns), chief proponent of an anti-gun measure in the 2013 legislative session, from hopping on Twitter to make political hay of the tragedy.
At 12:48 pm, while Sen. Deeds’ life was still hanging in the balance and the motive behind the attempted murder/suicide by his son remained unclear, Jones tweeted:
“When we don’t properly fund mental health, politicians are in danger, literally.”
A family tragedy that had nothing to do with Sen. Deeds being a politician occurs and Jones claims that inadequate funding for mental health problems puts “politicians in danger”? As if everyone suffering from some kind of psychiatric disorder is secretly thinking to themselves, “I gotta kill a politician!”
But as stupid as the tweet about politicians being in danger was, the crass use of this sad tragedy for political advantage was truly tasteless.
Gus Deeds’ body was still warm and Sen. Deeds was still in critical condition – with no one knowing if he was even going to live – and Justin Jones took that opportunity to make a political statement? On Twitter?
Have you no shame, Senator?
When I called Jones on this in a reply to his Twitter post – “Way to politicize a tragedy, Senator” – Bob Fulkerson, longtime liberal political activist up in Reno, rushed to Jones’ defense and responded…
“Entirely appropriate. Lack of mental health$= unspeakable violence. Let’s talk about this, not bury it.”
“Bury it”? With the boy’s body still lying on the floor at the family home? Unbelievable.
As Grant Hewitt of Red Point Strategies noted in a follow-up tweet to Fulkerson…
“There is a time & place, as a father is hospitalized & a family makes arrangements to bury a son (now) is not that time.”
That Jones and Fulkerson apparently couldn’t see that says an awful lot about their character.