Berkley offers character references


Continuing to play defense against attacks on her ethics, Rep. Shelley Berkley in her latest television ad presents voters with character references who wear badges.

"I've seen the attacks against Shelley Berkley, but I know it's just politics," Washoe County Sheriff Mike Haley looks into the camera and tells viewers. "I want you to know I support Shelley Berkley because she's a person of integrity and she's always stood up for Nevada."

The 30-second spot that began airing today statewide is the Democratic Senate candidate's latest bid to counter ads by Republican incumbent Sen. Dean Heller and the Crossroads GPS super PAC that began running new commercials last week hitting her on ethics.

The attacks are prompted by an investigation the House ethics committee launched this summer into the Las Vegas congresswoman's advocacy on kidney health issues that appeared to intersect with her husband's nephrology practice.

Attempting to deepen their characterization of the Democratic hopeful as ethics-challenged, Republicans have resurrected a Berkley run-in from 1996 when she worked as an attorney for the Las Vegas Sands and suggested her bosses offer favors to Clark County commissioners.

The Berkley's campaign in this rebuttal puts forward three Southern Nevada police officers as well as Haley, whose Washoe County job is nonpartisan but who Democrats have tried to recruit to run for public office.

"We trust Shelley Berkley," says Michael Ramirez, an officer with Las Vegas Metro police who was decorated for valor last year.

Also offering endorsements are Kirk Hooten and Scott Nicholas, Metro officers and board members on the Las Vegas Police Protective Association, the police union.

"That's why law enforcement across Nevada is supporting Shelley Berkley for U.S. Senate," Haley says as the screen notes Berkley's endorsement by police groups that make up the Southern Nevada Conference of Police and Sheriffs.