Democrats poke fun at Lowden

Two chickens for a mammogram?

Clark County Democrats took many jabs at Sue Lowden's chicken bartering health care comment during Saturday's convention at Rancho High School.

Buttons that read "Free-Range Lunacy Chicken Sue" had cartoon character Foghorn Leghorn patting Lowden on the shoulder and were passed out to the 330 attendees -- mostly delegates and politicians -- from a Kentucky Fried Chicken basket.

At one point during the event, a man dressed in a bright yellow chicken costume danced to "Out of Touch " by Hall and Oates.

And several of the political speakers, including Rep. Shelley Berkley and keynote speaker Sen. Maria Cantwell of Washington, poked fun at the Republican hopeful for U.S. Senate during their speeches.

"What the heck was she thinking?" Berkley chided.

"When you don't have access to health care, you have to go through health insurance companies," Cantwell said. "Ever try to barter with an insurance company?"

All joking aside, the county's delegates heard from Sen. Harry Reid, gubernatorial candidate Rory Reid, Secretary of State Ross Miller, Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto, Treasurer Kate Marshall and several other candidates in state, county and local races.

It seems Democrats have focused their attention on saving education from further budget cuts and passing comprehensive immigration reform as their next projects, on top of the economic stimulus package and health care reform already passed.

Rory Reid, a Clark County commissioner, beat up on his incumbent competitor, Gov. Jim Gibbons.

"When you interview job applicants for your business you expect them to be honest," Reid said. "After three long tortuous Gibbons years, I think the people of Nevada will finally decide on a leader that will tell them the truth.

"He's hidden for most of his term. Nobody knows what he's doing, where he's doing it or why he's doing it."

Reid said his campaign centers around education, which he said will lead to job creation, something Nevada desperately needs as unemployment levels continue to stay above the national average.

For Las Vegas resident and retired elementary school teacher Marilyn Groves, prioritizing education statewide is key to an economic rebound.

"The fact that he's the son of the Senate majority leader won't hurt," said Groves, who taught K-5 for 46 years in Nevada and California. "We'll get all the money we need, and because Rory is quite bright, he'll know how to use it and spend it."

The group acknowledged that primaries were virtually uncontested for most Democrat incumbents with names like Berkley, Reid and Rep. Dina Titus earning thunderous cheers from the crowd.

Titus was not present at the event but sent a letter saying she was occupied with "legislative business."

"We're just sitting back and waiting," said Groves, who also is a delegate. "Now once the primaries are over and we can join whatever campaign we want, we'll be ready to go."

Harry Reid took the stage as John Mellencamp's "Small Town" played.

The elder Reid plugged his campaign, mentioned his hand in passing the historic health care bill and detailed his plan for immigration reform. The plan would enforce penalties and fees for illegal immigrants who break the law and make undocumented workers pay taxes and learn English. The proposed legislation re-examines employer sanctions for hiring illegal immigrants.

"The system is broken and needs to be fixed," Reid said. "It's fiscally impossible to deport 11 million people at one time."

And it was no coincidence he lightly discussed education, a key point in his son's gubernatorial campaign.

One consistent point was made clear at the convention by nearly every speaker: Voters need to make the Reid dynasty happen by re-electing Reid into the U.S. Senate and his son, Rory, as Nevada's next governor.

"He fought for us," said Secretary of State Ross Miller. "It's important we fight for him."

Contact Kristi Jourdan at or 702-383-0279.