Reid ad stalled

Democratic candidate for governor Rory Reid last week attacked his Republican opponent, Brian Sandoval, for being too cozy with lobbyists. A Reid television ad, which also ran in a Spanish version on Latino stations, suggested that the kid glove treatment of “big banks and other powerful interests” have led to joblessness. The ad showed him saying, “They crashed our economy, and now they’ve recruited Brian Sandoval to run for governor. They’ll just keep holding Brian Sandoval’s hands.” In a news release, the campaign pointed to banking deregulation legislation Sandoval sponsored.

This is a reference to Pete Ernaut and Greg Ferraro, campaign consultants and lobbyists who were among a number of those lobbying on banking legislation at the Nevada Legislature. They urged Sandoval to leave a judgeship and run for governor.

But the ad lost some of its punch when it was learned that in 2001 Reid himself had been a utility and mining lobbyist representing Pacific Gas and Electric and Placer Dome, a Canadian mining corporation. At the time, Reid chaired the Nevada Democratic Party. That 2001 session backed away from some of Nevada’s previous deregulation of electric generation. The 2000 electric generation deregulation crisis in California wreaked havoc in Nevada, which ended up in litigation against Enron.

In addition, Reid’s own law firm, Lionel Sawyer and Collins, was also hired to lobby on banking legislation.