Entries in Nevada (39)


In Nevada, Paul Ryan Urges Early Voting One Day Before Deadline

Steve Pope/Getty Images(RENO, Nev.) -- Paul Ryan had a direct message for Nevadans on Thursday: “Early voting doesn’t end until tomorrow so don’t forget that you can get out and early vote.”

Ryan told several hundred people in this battleground state that Nevada is “crucial.”

“A handful of states are going to determine this thing,” he said at the Reno-Sparks Convention Center.

Ryan then told the crowd to talk to those in their lives who may have helped Barack Obama defeat John McCain there four years ago.  It’s a theme he’s struck at many campaign stops.

“In a state where you have unemployment above 11 percent, [hope and change is] not working,” he said.

According to the Nevada Secretary of State, 533,064 votes have already been cast, which is 55 percent of the total votes cast in 2008.  Of those ballots, 235,514 are from registered Democrats, 200,678 are from registered Republicans, and 96,872 are from “other.”

A Pew Research Center survey finds the race is neck-and-neck among early voters, a stark contrast with this point in 2008, when Obama led McCain by 19 points among those who had voted early.

Ryan headed to Las Vegas next, where he greeted volunteers at a campaign office.  President Obama was also in Las Vegas Thursday afternoon holding a rally in front of 4,500 people on his first day back on the campaign trail after taking a break from politics to deal with the devastation of superstorm Sandy.

The president and Ryan have been circling each other on Thursday.  Both stopped in Wisconsin and Colorado.  The GOP vice presidential nominee began his day in his hometown of Janesville, Wis., after taking his children trick-or treating Wednesday night, then held an event in Greeley, Colo.  The president was in Green Bay, Colo., where Ryan was Wednesday, and ended his day with an event in Denver Thursday evening.

Ryan will head back to Colorado on Friday, stopping in Montrose before traveling to Iowa for a campaign event in Cedar Falls, and ending the day with a joint rally with his running mate, Mitt Romney, as well as scores of other surrogates in West Chester, Ohio.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Obama Invokes Superstorm Sandy on the Campaign Trail

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images(LAS VEGAS) – After canceling campaign events for three days to oversee the response to the devastating storm, President Obama, back on the trail, told supporters in two key battleground states Thursday that Superstorm Sandy serves as a reminder that “when disaster strikes, we see America at its best.”

“All the petty differences that consume us in normal times somehow melt away,” the president told 4,500 Nevadans at a rally in Las Vegas. “There are no Democrats or Republicans during a storm, just fellow Americans, leaders of different parties working to fix what’s broken, neighbors helping neighbors cope with tragedy, communities rallying to rebuild, a spirit that says, In the end we’re all in this together, that we rise or fall as one nation.”

The storm provided Obama with a chance to showcase bipartisan leadership in the final run-up to the election and to cast himself as a take-charge commander-in-chief.

He spent Wednesday touring damaged areas with Republican New Jersey governor and prominent Romney-backer Chris Christie. In a show of bipartisanship, and a budding political “bromance,” the president and Christie have publicly praised the others’ preparation for and response to the hurricane.

On Thursday, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg endorsed President Obama for a second term, citing climate change and saying Sandy “brought the stakes of Tuesday’s presidential election into sharp relief.”

“We are awed by the destructive power of nature. We’re mourning those who’ve been lost. And we’re — we’re going to pledge to those whose lives have been turned upside down that we will not quit until we have given them all the help they need to recover,” the president said in Las Vegas.

As he flew to Nevada from his first post-Sandy campaign event in Wisconsin, the president called state and local officials responding to the storm from Air Force One.

“The thing that I repeated to them every time that I talk to them is, America will not forget them. We are going to make sure they get everything they need. We’re going to cut through the red tape and the bureaucracy,” he said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Romney Likens Obama Campaign to Sinking Ship

Win McNamee/Getty Images(HENDERSON, Nev.) – In his first appearance since the final presidential debate, Mitt Romney stormed into the battleground state of Nevada and characterized President Obama’s campaign as a sinking ship.

“These debates have super-charged our campaign,” Romney said during the first of two joint appearances Tuesday with running mate Paul Ryan. “There’s no question about it, we’re seeing more and more enthusiasm, more and more support.”

“He’s been reduced to try to defend characters on Sesame Street and word games of various kinds, and then misfired attacks after one and another,” Romney said of Obama. “You know the truth is that attacks on me are not an agenda.”

Romney was making reference to Obama’s latest attack line that accuses the Republican nominee of having “Romnesia” when it comes to remembering his position on certain issues. Earlier Tuesday at a rally of his own in Florida, President Obama said that Romney’s “Romnesia” was a “severe outbreak” during the debate, adding, “It was at least stage-three ‘Romnesia.’”

But in Nevada Tuesday Romney sought to focus on his argument that the president has not offered a clear agenda for the next four years.

“We’ve gone through four debates, with the vice presidential debate and my debates, and we haven’t heard an agenda from the president, and that’s why his campaign is taking on water and our campaign is full speed ahead!” Romney said.

President Obama’s campaign released a 20-page glossy magazine outlining his plan for the next four years Tuesday, and the Romney campaign quickly pounced and called the move a “glossy panic button.” Tuesday marks Romney’s first trip to Nevada since last month.

Ryan warmed up the crowd of 6,000, praising his running mate’s debate performances, saying Americans saw a “man who is ready to become a great president,” and tailoring his message for this state hit hard by the housing crisis.

“You know what we saw last night, we saw Gov. Mitt Romney offer this country bold ideas and leadership. In so many ways and you know this right here in Nevada, look at the unemployment rate, we cannot afford four more years like the last four years,” Ryan said.

Romney and Obama faced off for the final time Monday night and Ryan asked the boisterous crowd, “You know what we saw last night?”

“Yet again, another display of a man who could be president, another display of someone with the demeanor, with the temperament, with the skills to be a leader,” Ryan answered. “What we saw last night was Mitt Romney being concerned about America’s position in the world and President Obama more concerned about his position in this race.”

The GOP vice presidential nominee noted that voters go to the polls just two weeks from Tuesday, saying then the president “is going to become former President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney is going to be the next president of the United States.”

“Because we can do better than this, we don’t have to settle for this,” Ryan continued.

He also reminded voters in the battleground state that early voting has already started. Polls show Romney and Obama in a tight race in Nevada, with some showing that nationally the race is within the margin of error. The new ABC News/Washington Post poll released Tuesday evening shows Romney with 49 percent support among likely voters to Obama’s 48 percent nationally.

The GOP ticket will appear Tuesday evening at a rally with Kid Rock and country star Trace Adkins in another coveted state: Colorado.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


GOP Shifts Presidential Campaign Resources to Colorado and Nevada

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- With polls showing Mitt Romney locked in tight races with President Obama in Colorado and Nevada, the Republican National Committee -- in conjunction with the Romney campaign -- is beefing up its operation in the two western battlegrounds.

GOP officials tell ABC News that the RNC is “adding additional staff” in both states -- some of whom are being re-assigned from their posts in New Mexico (though the officials noted they “are maintaining offices and staff” there.)

Colorado, with its nine electoral votes, and Nevada, with six, are shaping up to be two of the most closely contested states on the 2012 map. The latest polls give Obama only a slight edge in both places.

A CBS News-New York Times-Quinnipiac University survey out earlier this week showed the president with 48 percent support compared to 47 percent for Romney. And a CNN-Opinion Research Corporation poll released on Thursday finds Obama leading Romney 49 percent to 46 percent among  likely voters.

By contrast, ABC News rates New Mexico as solidly Democratic.

The Republican presidential nominee will hold a public campaign event in Colorado this weekend for the first time since early August. And he heads to Nevada on Friday for an afternoon rally in Las Vegas. It will be his sixth trip to Nevada since April.

“The GOP Victory team is bolstering our organizations in the key battlegrounds of Colorado and Nevada, two places where the president is hemorrhaging support thanks to his failed economic policies.  We are reallocating a few staff members from New Mexico where we will maintain staff and victory offices through November,” Republican National Committee spokesman Tim Miller told ABC News. “Our team will continue advocating for Governor Romney and his plan to strengthen the Middle class in each of these states where voters know that we can do better than the past four years.”

Colorado voted for Obama in 2008, but went with the Republican presidential candidate in all but one (1992) of the nine previous presidential elections dating back to 1972. Obama has spent more time in the state during the general election than his Republican challenger.

GOP sources tell ABC they have already “passed the 1 million voter contact mark” in both states. In Nevada, Republicans say they have made “4 times more phone calls and 12 times more door knocks than this time in 2008″ and in Colorado: “4 times more phone calls and 6 times more door knocks than this time” four years ago.

Other data points the Republicans cite: A 12 percent unemployment rate in Nevada and an 8.3 percent unemployment rate in Colorado where some 224,000 residents are out of work.

The Romney campaign has also been on the air with television ads in both states.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Ryan Says Obama Is ‘Not a Bad Guy,’ But ‘Bad at Creating Jobs’

Alex Wong/Getty Images(SPARKS, Nev.) -- Traditionally the No. 2 on a presidential ticket is the attack dog, and Paul Ryan in recent days has been going after the president pretty hard. But Friday the GOP vice presidential candidate lodged his attack beginning with a compliment.

“You know the president gave a big speech last night, well just hear me out. President Obama is not a bad guy,” Ryan said over cheers of “yes he is” from the crowd. “No, President Obama is not a bad guy. He’s good at giving great speeches, he’s just really bad at creating jobs.”

Ryan then continued his attack: “Here’s the problem, when you think that the road to success and prosperity is more borrowing, more spending, more taxing, more regulating, a government-centered society with a government-run economy, these are the kinds of results we will get and if we want the next four years to be any different than the last four years, we need a new president.”

It’s a line of attack Mitt Romney has also been using because of the president’s favorability ratings. The message the GOP ticket wants to get across is that the president is nice, but not competent, and to stay away from some of the more personal attacks they are afraid may backfire with the personally popular president. Obama has higher favorability ratings than Romney, but in an ABC News/Washington Post poll released this week the president’s number is seven points lower from his recent peak in April. Just 47 percent of registered voters see Obama favorably overall, while 49 percent rate him unfavorably. Forty percent of registered voters see Romney favorably, while 47 percent view the GOP presidential nominee unfavorably.

“The president can give lots of speeches. He can say a lot of beautiful things. But he can’t tell you that we are better off,” Ryan said in the parking lot of a Peterbilt truck parts and equipment company.

With the backdrop of the rugged Nevada desert, Ryan also mentioned the tepid job numbers released Friday morning.The report, worse than expected, showed that the economy created 96,000 jobs in August, below economist expectations of 125,000. The unemployment rate was down 8.1 percent, but it showed nearly 400,000 people had stopped looking.

The House budget chairman called the report “disappointing news.”

“We learned today that for every person that got a job, nearly four people stopped looking for a job,” Ryan said to a crowd of about 1,400. “They gave up. We can’t keep doing this. Our economy needs to create just 150,000 jobs every month just to keep up with the growth of our population. Friends, this is not an economic recovery, this is nowhere close to an economic recovery.”

Ryan tailored his remarks to this battleground state, telling voters they have a “special responsibility” and that the rest of the country is “depending” on Nevadans.

Ryan also mentioned the home foreclosure crisis that has rocked Nevada, as well as the Democratic Senate majority leader Harry Reid, who hails from this state.

“The president gave us this big stimulus package right when he got elected,” Ryan said. "He said when we pass the stimulus, unemployment will never get above eight percent. We just learned today that it’s been over eight percent for over 43 months. In Nevada, its 12 percent. Look at the foreclosure rate. Look at the unemployment rate.”

He then hit the United State Senate for not passing a budget, name-checking the state’s senator.

“Hey, you guys heard of this guy named Reid in the Senate?” Ryan asked sarcastically to boos. “So I take it as a yes. They haven’t bothered to pass a budget in three years. They have a law that says every year, April 15 -- April 15th is tax day for Americans, it’s budget day for Congress.  They’ve ignored it for three years.  Friends, this is not, this is not governing. This is kicking the can.”

From Nevada, Ryan heads to California to begin a few days of fundraising on the West coast.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Paul Ryan Meets with Nevada Donors as Protest Rages Outside

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images(LAS VEGAS) -- Hundreds of protesters greeted Paul Ryan on Tuesday as he met with a small group of Nevada donors, including casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, at the Venetian hotel.

Protesters gathered outside the casino, chanted “Paul Ryan go home” and waved signs that read, “Romney/Ryan Road to Ruin, “Paul Ryan Hustling for the One Percent” and “This is What Democracy Looks Like?”

The group was mostly made of labor organizations, including the American Federation of Government Employees, who were in Las Vegas for a conference.  They joined up with local labor chapters to protest, including members of the AFL-CIO.

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According to donors leaving the event, there were about 40 people gathered.  Earlier Tuesday, a Ryan aide said the soiree, called a Nevada Finance Leadership Event, was not a fundraiser because no tickets were sold and guests did not pay to attend.  A female donor leaving, who did not want to be identified, said the meeting was to discuss how to raise money for the campaign.

As donors left they were exceptionally press shy, with one woman confirming that Ryan did address the crowd, calling his speech, “wonderful.”  A young man, much younger than most of the donors leaving, described it as a “good event.”

Besides Adelson and Ryan, former Senate candidate Sue Lowden was also slated to attend.

Romney fundraisers in public places, like a hotel as opposed to a private home, are open to a pooled press contingent.  Tuesday evening’s event was closed to the press because the campaign described the meeting as a finance event and not a fundraiser.

Adelson and his wife, Miriam, have given at least $10 million to the pro-Romney super PAC Restore Our Future.  They also gave $20 million to a super PAC supporting Newt Gingrich during the primary campaign.  Adelson has vowed to spend $100 million to defeat President Obama.  He recently accompanied Romney on his overseas trip to Israel.

Ryan also addressed a boisterous group at a different rally Tuesday afternoon, telling the crowd they are being given a “clear contrast” and while the president only offers “division and demagoguery,” he and Romney bring “optimism and opportunity.”

“It’s been really exciting, it’s been an exciting few days to get put on the ticket with Gov. Mitt Romney because we feel that we owe you, our fellow citizens, a very clear choice, and a very clear contrast,” Ryan said at a local high school.  “You know why?  ‘Cause it’s not going the right direction.  The president is putting us on the wrong path and we’re going to fix this thing and get America back on track.  This election is going to fly by the next 80 or so days but what you’re going to see and what we’re now seeing from the president is nothing more than division and demagoguery.  We are going to offer optimism and opportunity.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Marco Rubio to Campaign for Romney This Weekend

US Senate(WASHINGTON) -- Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., is set to make some high profile surrogate appearances on behalf of Mitt Romney this weekend in Colorado and Nevada, campaigning solo for the presumptive GOP nominee for the first time, ABC News has learned.

A source with knowledge of the events told ABC News Rubio will campaign for Romney at a rally at Rubio’s old elementary school in Las Vegas on Saturday, followed by a rally in Denver later that day.  Rubio also will participate in finance events for Romney while in the area.

Rubio, a dynamic young politician and favorite of some conservatives to be the GOP running mate, endorsed Romney in March.  But he has made limited appearances on the trail for Romney compared to other surrogates and potential running mates, such as former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty and Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio.

In April, Rubio appeared with Romney for the first and only time at an event in Aston, Penn.  Earlier this month, Rubio headlined a fundraiser for Romney in downtown Boston.  The Romney campaign invited Rubio to attend a donor retreat for Romney’s top fundraisers, but the Florida senator declined so he could spend time with his family.

Rubio is the only person Romney has publicly acknowledged is being vetted for the vice presidential slot, but the Florida senator has stayed quiet on the process out of “respect” for Romney’s decision.

Though their time together has been sparse, Romney has incorporated Rubio into his stump speech several times, consistently drawing applause from crowds at the mention of the Florida senator’s story.

“[Rubio] said something that will stay with me a long time,” Romney said at a June rally in Council Bluffs, Iowa.  “He said when I was a boy living poor in this country with my family, we saw some other homes, great big homes and fancy cars.  He said, ‘I never heard my parents say why can’t we have what they have.  Instead my parents said aren’t we lucky to live in a country where with education and hard work, there’s a shot we have of earning that ourselves.’  That’s the nature of America.  We’re the land of opportunity.”

The son of Cuban immigrants, Rubio was born in Miami but his family moved to Las Vegas for a brief time where his father worked as a bartender.  While living in Nevada, the family, except for Rubio’s father, converted to Mormonism.

Rubio wrote about attending C.C. Ronnow Elementary School, where Saturday’s rally will take place, in his autobiography, An American Son.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Rick Perry to Campaign for Romney in Nevada

Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Texas Gov. Rick Perry will make his first campaign appearance on behalf of Mitt Romney Friday in Nevada, ABC News has learned.

Perry will appear at the opening of the Romney campaign’s field office in Elko, Nev.  Romney will not be in attendance.

Perry, who dropped his own presidential bid and threw his initial backing behind Newt Gingrich just two days before the South Carolina primary, endorsed Romney in late April, but has yet to publicly campaign for his one-time rival.

In late May, Perry and Romney held a joint conference call with the Texas governor’s top donors, urging his network to raise money for the former Massachusetts governor.  First lady of Texas Anita Perry attended a fundraiser with Ann Romney in Texas in May as well.

Nevada was home to one of Perry and Romney’s most heated exchanges last fall.  During a CNN debate in Las Vegas in October, Perry accused Romney of hiring illegal immigrants to landscape his home, and Romney claimed that illegal immigration had increased 60 percent in Texas.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


What to Watch in Tuesday’s Voting Contests

Ethan Miller/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Voters take to the polls to cast their ballots in Arizona, Maine, Virginia, Nevada, North Dakota and South Carolina on Tuesday.  Residents of these respective states will decide on a series of contests including a special election, a crowded Republican Senate primary and a decision on whether to change a university nickname.

Here are the top four things to watch in Tuesday’s voting contests:

1.) Special Election in Arizona

The race to fill the seat left open by the retirement of former Rep. Gabby Giffords, who stepped down from Congress in January, takes place Tuesday in Arizona’s 8th congressional district.  Ron Barber, Giffords’ former district director, and Jesse Kelly, a former marine who also ran against Giffords in 2010, will face off in the Republican-leaning district.  Polling shows Barber in the lead but the race is far from certain.

2.) Senate Primaries in Maine

When Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe announced her decision to retire in February, the Senate map for Democrats briefly looked very exciting.  Maine is considered to be a relatively blue state, and the state boasted a deep bench of potential Democratic contenders.  But both parties were thrown for a loop when former Independent Gov. Angus King announced he would be jumping in the race.  With many assuming King would ultimately end up caucusing with the Democrats (King has so far refused to commit to either party), the more-well known Dems in the state opted not to enter the race, while Republicans continued to enter in droves.  Six Republicans and four Democrats are on the ballot Tuesday, with an interesting three-way race soon to follow.

3.) North Dakota’s Nickname Referendum

In North Dakota, turnout is expected to be driven by two ballot measures -- a referendum to ban property taxes in the state, and a referendum on whether to discontinue the University of North Dakota’s “Fighting Sioux” nickname.  The referendum -- known as Senate Bill 2370 -- asks voters to decide whether they would prefer to allow the university to discontinue the nickname or logo, or require the university to use said nickname and logo.  The school’s mascot has been under fire for some time, and the debate over retirement has been on-going.  Supporters of the measure argue that the nickname negatively affects the school’s athletics program (in addition, of course, to the argument that the nickname is offensive).  Polling indicates a majority of support for the measure.

If it passed, the nickname would not be changed until January, 2015 at the earliest, and it is not know what the new nickname and logo might be.  UND would join a relatively large group of universities who have retired Native American nicknames and mascots over the past several decades including Miami University, Seattle University and the College of William and Mary.

4.) Official Start of Close Key Senate Races in Virginia, Nevada and North Dakota

What do Virginia, Nevada and North Dakota have in common?  They’re all states with closely-watched, tightly contested Senate races this fall.  With Democrats holding onto the narrow majority in the Senate, Republicans are hoping to potentially pick-up seats in Virginia and North Dakota, while Democrats are hoping to pick one up in Nevada.

The candidates in these races are already virtually known (barring any surprise upsets).  In Virginia, Democrat Tim Kaine is running unopposed, and Republican George Allen is the clear front-runner in the GOP field.  In Nevada, Rep. Shelley Berkley is expected to officially claim the Democratic nomination, while Sen. Dean Heller will, in all likelihood, officially win the Republican nod.  And in North Dakota, former Attorney General Heidi Heitkamp is running unopposed for the Democratic nomination and Rep. Rick Berg is considered the likely GOP nominee.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Romney Reminds Voters of Obama’s Unflattering Vegas Remarks

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(LAS VEGAS, Nev.) -- Mitt Romney, returning to the battleground state of Nevada for the first time since becoming the presumptive nominee, reminded a crowd there Tuesday of disparaging remarks made about Las Vegas by the president and promised that if he’s elected, he won’t shy away from traveling to Sin City.

“It was only three and a half, four years ago that Barack Obama was campaigning here and I know he raised a lot of people’s hopes,” said Romney, standing on the floor of a furniture company. “He was talking about making things better and he was going to bring the country together and I know he had a lot of you folks thinking things were going to get real good. And he’s been a big disappointment hasn’t he?”

“As a matter of fact he came into the White House and told people not to bother to go out to Las Vegas for conventions or meetings,” said Romney.

Romney was referring to a series of remarks made by President Obama over the past few years that have been less than flattering about Las Vegas. The first, in 2009, came when Obama was speaking about federal spending and said, “You can’t go take a trip to Las Vegas or go down to the Super Bowl on the taxpayer’s dime.”

Then, in 2010, Obama during a town hall meeting warned about frivolous spending in Las Vegas, remarking, “You don’t blow a bunch of cash in Vegas when you’re trying to save for college.”

“That sure as heck didn’t help, did it?” said Romney Tuesday, to cheers from the crowd. “I’ll tell you if I become the next president of the United States, I’m going to remind people I’ve come to Las Vegas, I love it here. Come out to Las Vegas and spend some time.”

Romney, who won the state’s primary in February, has not been back in the state since and is there Tuesday primarily to rake in cash -- particularly at an evening fundraiser featuring Donald Trump. The event is expected to raise more than $2 million. Romney also met privately with casino giant Sheldon Adelson Tuesday afternoon at The Venetian Hotel. Adelson had previously backed Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaign.

“It’s entirely possible that late in the evening of Nov. 6, the nation is going to be wondering what’s going to happen in Nevada,” said Romney, looking ahead to the fall election, as a man in the crowd screamed out, “You can do it!”

“Yeah, exactly, that’s a good strong voice,” Romney responded. “And I’m counting on you guys to go out and make sure that you elect a president who tells people to come to Las Vegas, not to stay away from Las Vegas. Who gets us on the track to have a strong and vibrant economy again.”

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Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio