So, you think you know the crazy world of Nevada politics and business? You think you can separate reality from the bizarre conspiracy theories that multiply like quagga mussels? Put your knowledge to the test with this quiz:
1. Nevada Democrats didn’t field a top-quality candidate for governor this year because:
a.) They forgot
b.) Gov. Brian Sandoval was just too popular
c.) Sen. Harry Reid had a secret deal with Sandoval to clear the field in exchange for a Sandoval promise not to run against Reid in 2016
d.) They figured, “Why not give Bob Goodman a chance?”
Correct answer: B. Sandoval’s primary showing (nearly 90 percent) and his high poll numbers were enough to scare away almost all Democrats, most of whom saw a challenge to Sandoval as a political suicide mission.
2. Lucy Flores’ campaign for lieutenant governor most closely resembles which national campaign?
a.) Barack Obama for president, 2008
b.) Hillary Clinton for president, 2008
c.) Geraldine Ferraro for vice president, 1984
d.) Sarah Palin for vice president, 2008
Correct answer: A. Much like Obama, Flores is campaigning for higher office with just a few years of elected service under her belt. She’s running as a young, fresh candidate, relying on her life story rather than a long retinue of accomplishments in office. But we know how that worked out for Obama.
3. Which Nevada elected official should we be most surprised has not been cast in a reality show?
a.) Sen. Harry Reid
b.) Gov. Brian Sandoval
c.) Clark County Commissioner Steve Sisolak
d.) Las Vegas Township Constable John Bonaventura
Correct answer: D. Actually, Bonaventura’s office was the subject of a reality pilot, but it never developed into a show. And boy, did those producers miss the boat. You’ve got a real-life “All the President’s Men,” complete with unreported campaign cash, taped conversations, shredded records, official investigations, pointless and unsuccessful lawsuits, and, ultimately, a politician leaving in disgrace. Ratings gold.
4. What will be the next economic sector to really boom in Nevada?
a.) Drones that fly advertising banners and drop sex leaflets all over the Strip
b.) Wineries in Las Vegas and Reno
c.) Medical marijuana growing/processing/dispensing
d.) Construction on traffic projects that tear up perfectly good roads and make them less useful
Correct answer: It’s C, but if you guessed D, I couldn’t blame you!
5. What will be the next Las Vegas-area organization to go out of business?
a.) Caesars Entertainment
b.) the Las Vegas Sun
c.) North Las Vegas
d.) Conservative think tank Nevada Policy Research Institute
Correct answer: C. Bond holders may bet against Caesars, but nothing really bad ever happens to a gambling company in Las Vegas! The Sun has a long-standing, joint-operating-agreement with the Review-Journal to keep it afloat (not to mention “Dilbert”), and as long as NPRI continues to get tons of free media and support from its wonderfully anonymous donors, it will stay afloat.
6. Before he switched to drinking Bombay Sapphire gin, former Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman drank which horrible beverage?
b.) Las Vegas tap water
c.) Beefeater gin
Correct answer: C. In fact, he was working on a deal to get his face on bottles of Beefeater when the Bombay deal came along.
7. Which of these events will happen first?
a.) Nevada Legislature passes a business tax and a budget that fully funds education and mental health
b.) U.S. Congress passes comprehensive immigration reform after Rep. Joe Heck angrily confronts Speaker John Boehner in House washroom
c.) Sen. Harry Reid gives up crusade against the Koch brothers
d.) The sun exhausts its nuclear fuel and begins to expand into a red giant, ending all life on Earth
Correct answer: D. Less than 3 billion years left!
Steve Sebelius is a Review-Journal political columnist who blogs at SlashPolitics.com. Follow him on Twitter (@SteveSebelius) or reach him at 702-387-5276 or SSebelius@reviewjournal.com.