So a trio of Assembly Democrats are under fire for failing to report they spent campaign money on living expenses while the Legislature was in session and ... wait. What? It's OK for legislators to let Barrick and MGM pay their living expenses so long as they report it? Go, Nevada, go!
Also... is Republican Sen. Mike Roberson lucky or what? Roberson was once a glorified gopher for disgraced Dancing With the Stars contestant Tom DeLay, and he can't wait to return to Washington. Except next time, instead of being a flunky for a fruitloop, he hopes to be the fruitloop, with flunkies all his own. In other words, he's a candidate for U.S. House or Senate within, at most, three election cycles. Guaranteed.
But meantime, Roberson needs Nevada cred. And so as the ablest Republican in the state Senate (it's a low bar), he has been scurrying to raise enough money to a) elect Republicans and b) make sure they don't have to pay their own bills either while hermetically sealed every other year in the Carson City Bubble. Alas, Democratic Sen. Sheila Leslie delightfully decided to switch districts and challenge a sitting Republican, so the Roberson math, it hurts. Complicating matters further, after a half-term of thoughtless and reflexive wingnuttery, GOP Sen. Elizabeth Halseth has decided to treat her office as she has treated her senses, and now both will be vacated, opening up yet another opportunity for Democrats.
Poor Mike Roberson. Except! He can blame circumstances beyond his control when the Republicans fail to win the Senate. AND more importantly, he can settle into the comfort of the minority and just throw teabagger-approved stinkbombs at everyone for the foreseeable future -- or as the political consultants call it, nurturing the Republican base -- until the federal race comes along that feels right for MIke.
Finally, one-percenter and erstwhile legislative lobbyist Harvey Whittemore may have paid his fellow one-percenters and juice brokers at R&R Partners as much as $70,000 a month over five years for -- public relations? Advertising? Persuading every politician in a 600-mile radius that Harvey Whittemore likes them? -- because that's how these people roll.
That money is but chicken poop compared to the jillions that may or may not have been his and that Whittemore reportedly threw around indiscriminately in the course of failing to develop the Hilariously Most Ridiculous Idea in the History of Western U.S. Real Estate, or as the media insists on calling it, "Coyote Springs."
Which brings us back to ... the vaporized political non-career of Elizabeth Halseth? Yes, Halseth.
Here we have a state where lobbyist/campaign money oozes out of every inflamed pustule of the public process, a state where campaign contributors (i.e., lobbyists) even pay living expenses for lawmakers while they're performing their duties as elected officials. Yet a sitting state senator who never exhibited the slightest compunction about enthusiastically parroting anything that anyone in the private sector said evidently couldn't find a single inluence peddler who would arrange a simple six-figure sinecure for her so she could continue to utter mindless wingnut noises, stimulus-response fashion, in the senate.
That may be the most shocking recent revelation of all in the pathetic saga of venality, incompetence and dysfunction that is Your Nevada Legislature.