Rep. Joe Heck, R-Nev., expressed open frustration at House GOP leaders when it appeared they would not bring an immigration bill up for votes this year.
Heck said he backs immigration reform that could one day offer a path to U.S. citizenship for 11 million immigrants living here illegally. He doesn’t support a Senate immigration reform proposal but is looking for alternatives.
Heck also has been working on a version of the DREAM Act that would grant citizenship to young immigrants brought here illegally by their parents.
But all that hasn’t kept pro-immigration and union groups from targeting Heck in new TV ads along with eight other vulnerable Republicans in the House.
The Cost of Inaction campaign announced its ad campaign against Heck and his GOP peers last week as the ads began running in Nevada. The Cost of Inaction coalition includes the AFL-CIO, Service Employees International Union, America’s Voice, Mi Familia Vota, the PICO Action Fund and the Fair Immigration Reform Movement.
The effort aims to increase pressure on Heck “to either show leadership in passing immigration reform with citizenship this fall or face the political consequences of blocking one of the best chances for real reform in decades,” the group said.
The Cost of Inaction campaign also planned to hit the streets to contact more than 10,000 voters in Heck’s 3rd Congressional District in Southern Nevada. The canvas began on Saturday and will continue the following Saturday, Nov. 16.
Heck’s district includes 13 percent to 15 percent Latinos by population and is the most competitive congressional seat in the state with 10,000 more Democrats than Republicans out of a total 353,636 registered voters.
Recent polls show that three-quarters of those questioned in Heck’s district support immigration reform. A Magellan Strategies survey in October showed that if Heck backed immigration reform 40 percent of his constituents would have a more favorable opinion of him. About 24 percent would have a less favorable opinion of Heck, while the remaining 31 percent said it would make no difference. Five percent said they weren’t sure or had no opinion.
Mark Ciavola, Heck’s campaign manager, said it’s a waste of money to target Heck on immigration since he has made it clear he favors reform.
“I question how productive it is for these attacks to be launched against someone like Joe Heck,” Ciavola said. “He’s committed to finding real solutions.”
In the House, three Republicans have signed onto House Resolution 15, a version of immigration reform that has broad Democratic support. It’s unclear whether Heck will sign onto the legislation.
“Heck has not yet made any decisions relative to HR 15,” his congressional spokesman Greg Lemon said.
CONTROLLER RUNS FOR TREASURER
Nevada Controller Kim Wallin made it official last week, formally announcing her candidacy for state treasurer.
Wallin, a native Nevadan who graduated from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas with a major in accounting and a degree in business administration, is in her second term as controller. She is prohibited from running for the job again because of term limits.
Before becoming state controller, Wallin worked in her own accounting firm in Las Vegas, D K Wallin, Ltd., which she founded in 1984.
“As state treasurer I will continue to bring transparency and accountability to state government and adhere to the sound fiscal policies I implemented as controller,” she said in her announcement.
“As treasurer, I will use my skills as a certified financial manager to maximize the returns on our investments for the state,” Wallin said. “I especially want to expand and enhance the programs the state has to provide opportunities for all Nevadans to receive a college education.”
Wallin, a Democrat, is expected to face Republican businessman Dan Schwartz in the race. Schwartz has a bachelor’s degree from Princeton University, a law degree from Boston University and a master’s in business administration from Columbia University.
One other potential candidate, former GOP Treasurer Bob Seale, was said to be considering the race but announced Wednesday he would not seek the office.
Seale served as state treasurer from 1991 to 1999 and is not affected by the term-limit law that went into effect just as he left office.
Current state Treasurer Kate Marshall, also a Democrat, is barred by term limits from running for the office for a third term. She is running for secretary of state.
Wallin was the first CPA to be elected to the office of state controller in 50 years. She is the first certified management accountant and certified financial manager to hold the office.
Having worked in the private sector for most of her career, Wallin said her knowledge of business best practices has helped her to eliminate waste and inefficiency in state government.
POLL: DO YOU BACK MARGINS TAX?
Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval’s campaign wants to know how you feel about a proposed 2 percent margins tax on businesses “whether they are profitable or not.”
It’s something he opposes, although the question will appear on the 2014 ballot as an education initiative backed by the Nevada State Education Association.
The governor also wants your opinion on whether the state should have “school choice scholarships” funded with business tax incentives to give lower income students more education options. It’s something he supports.
The two questions are among 10 Sandoval’s campaign manager, Jeremy Hughes, asked supporters to answer in an email last week: http://bit.ly/HB7Cnp.
“Your involvement is critical to our success,” Hughes wrote in the email. “It will help us continue Nevada’s comeback and plan the best path forward for our state.”
Sandoval happens to be running for re-election in 2014. The survey is a way for his campaign to test his message and views with voters, something other successful politicians do. President Barack Obama is one of the best examples of his campaign interacting directly with supporters via email and social media.
“This is not the first time we’ve done this,” Hughes said. “The campaign is constantly looking for ways to engage our volunteers and supporters.”
The last question might be the most important — what is your email address? — as Sandoval tries to expand his list of supporters and potential volunteers and donors.
The three-day arbitration between the Metropolitan Police Department and its police union had a bit of Chicago-style humor in it. An attorney made the joke, and it wasn’t a crack about lawyers.
It was about Illinois governors.
Keep in mind that the Police Department’s attorney for the arbitration, Robert Smith, is with a law firm in Rosemont, Ill., a Chicago suburb.
The arbitrator, Robert Perkovich, also hails from Chicago.
First, Michael Tedesco, the Las Vegas Police Protective Association’s attorney, asked the arbitrator whether Illinois uses a fiscal year or a calendar year to track finances.
“It varies by jurisdiction,” Smith replied, according to the transcript.
“Really?” Tedesco said. “That’s nuts. I think we could all agree that should be changed.”
“We’ll tell the governor,” Smith said.
“That could be a dangerous thing in your state as I recall,” Tedesco said.
The last two Illinois governors before current Gov. Pat Quinn have seen the inside of a federal prison after being convicted for corruption-related charges. Former Illinois Gov. George Ryan did a little more than five years in federal prison and was freed this year after his 2006 conviction. The other former governor, Rod Blagojevich, is serving a 14-year sentence at the Federal Correctional Institute in Englewood, Colo.
If the Police Department sticks with Chicagoland attorneys for arbitration, they’ll have nice, long stretch for telling jokes.
Blagojevich’s earliest release is in 2024.
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