Saturday, October 16, 2010

Bonanza Column 207 – Election Endorsements

As you'll see elsewhere in this week's website and paper, the Bonanza has made its endorsements for various offices affecting us here at the Lake as well as on Washoe County Question 2. Mostly I agree with the paper, and where we disagree it's pretty minor. Nevertheless, in response to requests I've received, I'm going to chime in with mine.

Most will come as no surprise to regular readers of this column, and I won't rehash those arguments that I've made, sometimes more than once, in previous columns. So, for the record, Reid for Senator, Reid for Governor, Whomes for DA, and No on Question 2. The Senate and DA races seem like no-brainers to me. Angle has showed herself over and over again to be incapable of governing her mouth, much less the country, and most of the serious opposition to her seems to me to be coming from out of state interests whose interests would be served by getting rid of Harry Reid, but who have no interest in what's good for Nevada. Gammick has blocked the Tax Revolt's efforts to collect the tax refunds that the courts have said are coming to us, and that alone should be enough to make the difference.

The Governor's race is a closer call for me. I've liked Brian Sandoval for a while, and admire the commitment it takes to give up a Federal judgeship for a shot at other public service. However, his performance in the campaign has been lackluster to say the least, and he has failed to divulge any specific plans to back up his platitudes. Rory Reid, on the other hand has been open and explicit about his education and fiscal proposals. Campaign rhetoric is always a case of "we shall see," but at least Rory has given us something for which we can hold him to account, and I also like his plans better, so he gets my nod.

And No on Question 2 is another no-brainer – there is no conceivable upside for us in Washoe County spending money on studying the question of consolidation, because there is no upside to consolidation for anyone but the City of Reno.

For IVGID and the Fire District, I go three-quarters of the way with the Bonanza. We have what is arguably the finest fire protection in the country. Don Epstein and Gene Murrietta have served ably on the Fire Board, and deserve another term if they want it. Don't change horses in the middle of a race you're winning. For IVGID, I enthusiastically concur with the paper's endorsement of Bruce Simonian – I supported him in the primary and he has continued to show really good ideas and good sense in his campaign. For the other seat I go with Gene Brockman. Now if I had Gene's long record of distinguished service, I think I would retire to elder statesman status. But Gene wants to continue to serve, and with his experience and his incredible network of relationships with other municipal officials statewide, we'd be crazy not to take him up on it.

Now to briefly look at some other races, Dean Heller's bid to retain his seat in the House has received relatively little notice. While there are two people on the ballot opposing Heller, only one, Nancy Price of Sparks seems like a serious candidate. I don't know much about her but I do know this – when people from Incline went to DC to speak to Heller, Ensign, and Reid about the fight against pancreatic cancer they were received graciously and taken seriously by the two Senators' offices and rudely blown off by Heller's. That and his undistinguished record in the House are enough for me to pull the lever for Price.

Finally, Ross Miller, Kate Marshall, and Kim Wallin have all done a better than good job as Secretary of State, Treasurer, and Controller respectively and have earned the opportunity to continue the work they've started. Catherine Cortez Masto, despite her unfathomable endorsement of Gammick, has been an excellent Attorney General and should be retained in office as should Sheriff Mike Haley.

That's it; don't forget to vote!

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