Amodei defeats Marshall for Nevada congressional seat

RENO — Fed-up Republican voters fueled Mark Amodei’s special election blowout victory Tuesday over Democrat Kate Marshall, keeping the 2nd Congressional District in GOP hands while shaking up President Barack Obama’s supporters.

"The voters of Nevada have sent a message. The message is, it is time to start a change," Amodei told 200 supporters at the Eldorado Hotel.

Republicans spent heavily to ensure a big Amodei win — up to $1 million from the national party and GOP groups — as national Democrats all but abandoned state Treasurer Marshall in a district that has voted Republican since the House seat was created in 1982.

On the same night Amodei stomped Marshall by a whopping 22-point margin, 58 percent to 36 percent, Republicans won a special election shocker across the country in New York, taking what until recently was thought to be a safe Democratic House seat, too.

The two special elections together suggest a deep discontent with Obama’s economic policies as unemployment remains high — 12.9 percent in Nevada — and debt continues to grow. In 2008, Obama won Nevada handily but is considered vulnerable to defeat in the battleground state in 2012.

"People vote their pocketbooks," Amodei said, attributing his overwhelming win to the country’s sour mood. "Anytime the economy is in trouble, people pay more attention. They vote their pocketbooks."

Amodei, a former state senator, said he would go to Washington today and could be sworn in as soon as Thursday, finishing the term of former U.S. Rep. Dean Heller, who was appointed to the U.S. Senate in May to replace disgraced Republican Sen. John Ensign. Amodei told reporters he wants to look immediately at cutting at least $1 trillion in federal spending.

"Voters are basing their choices more on frustration with President Obama than congressional Republicans," agreed David Wasserman of The Cook Political Report. "It’s not as if Amodei is a perfect candidate and Marshall is terribly flawed. President Obama is a drag on the district."

Heading into Tuesday, Amodei was heavily favored over Marshall in the predominantly Republican district in the contest seen as a test of Obama’s strength in Nevada amid an unsettled mood nationwide.

Amodei beat Marshall in all 17 counties, even in Marshall’s home Washoe County. She lost in Washoe County 52 percent to 42 percent, a bad omen for other Democrats in Northern Nevada.

Nevada Democratic chairwoman Roberta Lange offered a subdued reaction to the results, saying, "Marshall fought tirelessly" to win the special election.

"While we are obviously disappointed in tonight’s results, Kate Marshall will continue to serve Nevada well as state treasurer," Lange said.

Republicans hold an 8 percentage point advantage in voter registration in the district, with 43 percent of voters compared with Democrats’ 35 percent. The seat rarely has been competitive, although Heller won it by only 5 points in 2006, the last time Democrats put up a strong challenge.

This election, Republicans have been more motivated to vote than Democrats, accounting for 54 percent of early voters compared with Democrats’ 34 percent. All told, there are 396,000 registered voters in the district, which covers all of Northern and rural Nevada and parts of Clark County.

That energy was on display at voting booths across the state on Tuesday.

"I’m 72, and this country is in the worst shape I have ever seen," said David Schulman, a registered Independent American voter casting his ballot at Johnson Lane Fire Station in conservative Douglas County. "I voted to make sure the messiah in Washington doesn’t get another ally."

Schulman said he backed Amodei to help make sure Marshall didn’t win.

"This is no time for nitpicking," he said.

Democrats who came out for Marshall did so out of duty as overall party turnout appeared low.

"I’m here because Democrats need all the help they can get," said Suzanne David, 77, who rode her bike to the polls in Minden despite conceding that Marshall had little chance of winning.

Independent Helmuth Lehmann and Independent American Tim Fasano also were on the ballot.

During the summer-long campaign, Amodei and Marshall largely battled in TV ads that aired in Washoe County, where more than half the district’s voters live and where the GOP holds a slim 2,000-voter advantage. Obama won Washoe County in 2008, and a poor showing by Marshall in that battleground county on Tuesday spells trouble for his re-election hopes in 2012.

The Medicare issue didn’t seem to sway many voters as Marshall sought to portray Amodei as just another Republican who wants to end the program for younger workers. Amodei fought back by putting in his campaign commercials his 79-year-old mother , who said her son wouldn’t hurt Medicare but help it.

Amodei said he would back a balanced budget amendment in Congress. He also signed a pledge not to raise taxes, moving to counter another Marshall line of attack because he once voted for the largest tax hike in Nevada history, an $800 million package that got bipartisan support in 2003.

In the end, Nevadans appeared to vote along mostly party lines with Republicans more energized, arriving at the polls in rural Nevada by bicycle, motorcycle, SUV and pickup.

Election workers said they were seeing a surprising number of voters at the Johnson Lane Fire Station, 12 miles south of Carson City. It’s a heavily Republican area, with seven of 10 voters who would reveal how they voted casting ballots for Amodei, who represented them for 12 years in the state Senate.

One Republican didn’t let the imminent birth of her baby keep her from the polls.

"Now that I have voted, she can arrive," joked 27-year-old Teresa Chamness, 38 weeks pregnant . "I voted for Mark Amodei. I am going to see my doctor now. I’m ready."

In Democrat-leaning Southern Nevada, rain and a lack of interest dampened turnout.

In Las Vegas, Rudell White said she voted for Amodei because she wanted to make sure the House seat stays in GOP control, as it has been since the district was first created in 1982.

"We’ve got to keep a Republican in there," White said at a voting station inside the multi-purpose room at Lowman Elementary School. "I’m a conservative. I’m a Republican. I think we absolutely have to stop the spending in Washington and run the government more like a business."

Also at Lowman, Kevin McCown said he voted for Amodei because he’s so upset at the current crop of Washington politicians that he wanted to put fresh faces in office. McCown, a former Democrat, said he registered as a nonpartisan last year after being laid off for 18 months since CityCenter was completed. The construction worker said his union asked him to vote for Marshall, but he refused.

"This is the first time I’ve voted since 1988," McCown said. "I’m trying to get some change in Washington. We need to get rid of Obamacare. We need to get rid of them all."

He left the polling place shouting, "Vote against all the incumbents!"

Democrats who said they voted for Marshall seemed just as angry at the GOP, which took over majority control of the U.S. House after the 2010 election and has been pushing to cut spending.

"Republicans are destroying this country by supporting politicians who solely represent corporations that send jobs overseas," said Carolyn Jones, 63, in Minden. "They are destroying Medicare that helps the elderly and are trying to destroy Social Security that we all pay into."

In Las Vegas, Timothy Mancour pointed to Marshall’s name on the ballot and said, "I voted for the Democrat, but if I thought Republicans would follow through on their promises I might vote for a Republican. I think she’ll do a good job if she gets in."

Mancour, a Democrat, said he’s been unemployed for 18 months and he isn’t sure whether he’ll vote for Obama in 2012 as he did in 2008. He said it depends on whether he finds a job.

"Right now I’m 80 percent sure I’ll vote for Obama, but if he doesn’t get his jobs plan passed and if I don’t find work, I don’t know what I’ll do," said Mancour, a laid-off driver who’s among the disenchanted class that Obama needs to keep in his column to win a second term.

Contact Ed Vogel at edvogel@reviewjournal.com or 775 687-3900. Contact Laura Myers at lmyers@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2919. Follow @lmyerslvrj on Twitter.

ad-high_impact_4
News
Melvin Dummar dead at 74
Melvin Dummar has died at 74. Dummar was famous for claiming to have saved Howard Hughes in a Nevada desert in 1967. Dummar claimed to have been left $156 million in Hughes’ will. The will mysteriously appeared after Hughes’ death in 1976. It was dismissed as a fake two years later. Dummar never saw a dime of the billionaire's fortune. Dummar died Saturday in Nye County.
Officer-involved shooting in Nye County
The Nye County Sheriff's Office gives information about a shooting in Pahrump on Thursday night after a man began firing shots outside of his home. (Nye County Sheriff's Office)
Law Enforcement Active Shooter Training Exercise
Multiple Las Vegas Valley law enforcement agencies held an active shooter drill at the Department of Public Safety’s Parole and Probation office on December 6, 2018. Officials set up the training exercise to include multiple active shooters, a barricaded suspect and multiple casualties. (Katelyn Newberg/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Public memorial service for Jerry Herbst
Archiving effort hits milestone at Clark County Museum
The Clark County Museum catalogs the final item from the bulk of Route 91 Harvest festival artifacts. (John Przybys/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Pearl Harbor survivor Edward Hall talks about his memories of Dec. 7, 1941
U.S. Army Corps Edward Hall, a 95-year-old survivor of Pearl Harbor talks about his memories of that horrific day. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Final Route 91 Harvest festival remembrance objects catalogued at Clark County Museum
The last of the more than 17,000 items left at the makeshift memorial near the Las Vegas sign after the Oct. 1 shootings have been catalogued at the Clark County Museum in Las Vegas. The final item was a black-and-white bumper sticker bearing "#VEGASSTRONG. An additional 200 items currently on display at the museum will be catalogued when the exhibit comes down. (K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Dozier execution timeline
Scott Dozier was set to be executed July 11, 2018, at the Ely State Prison. Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez delayed the execution.
Grand Jury Indicts Constable for theft
A Clark County grand jury indicted Henderson Constable Earl Mitchell. A Las Vegas Review-Journal investigation prompted the criminal probe. The newspaper found Mitchell wrote himself thousands in checks, took out cash at ATMs and traveled on county funds. He faces four felony counts of theft and a county of public misconduct. Mitchell and his attorney could not be reached for comment.
93-year-old WWII veteran arrested during visit to VA hospital
Dr. S. Jay Hazan, 93, a World War II veteran, talks about his arrest during his visit to VA hospital on Friday, Nov. 30. (Erik Verduzco Las Vegas Review-Journal @Erik_Verduzco_
Pearl Harbor survivor struggles in her senior years
Winifred Kamen, 77, survived the attack on Pearl Harbor as an infant, works a 100 percent commission telemarketing job to make ends meet. (K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas Metropolitan Briefing 18th street gang
Las Vegas Metropolitan briefs the media on the recent arrests made regarding the 18th street gang.
Man shot in Las Vegas traffic stop had knife, police say
Police said the man fatally shot by an officer during a traffic stop in downtown Las Vegas had a “homemade knife.” Demontry Floytra Boyd, 43, died Saturday at University Medical Center from multiple gunshot wounds after officer Paul Bruning, 48, shot him during a traffic stop. Bruning pulled Boyd over on suspicion of driving recklessly at 7:41 a.m. near Sunrise Avenue and 18th Street.
Catahoula dogs rescued from home in Moapa Valley
Catahoula dogs were brought to The Animal Foundation after being rescued from home in Moapa Valley.
Intuitive Forager Kerry Clasby talks about losses in California wildfire
Intuitive Forager Kerry Clasby talks about losses she suffered in California's Woolsey Fire in Malibu in November. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Benefit dinner for Kerry Clasby, the Intuitive Forager
Sonia El-Nawal of Rooster Boy Cafe in Las Vegas talks about having a benefit for Kerry Clasby, known as the Intuitive Forager, who suffered losses on her farm in California’s Woolsey Fire in Malibu. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Former President George H.W. Bush dies at 94
Former President George H.W. Bush has died at the age of 94. He died Friday night in Houston, about eight months after the death of his wife, Barbara.
Las Vegans Celebrate Big Snowfall
Las Vegans celebrate big snowfall at Lee Canyon.
Exploring old mines for denim jeans and other vintage items
Caden Gould of Genoa, Nev. talks about his experiences looking for vintage denim jeans and other items in old mines and other places areas across Nevada and the west.
Officers share photo of dead gunman after Las Vegas shooting
A little over an hour after SWAT officers entered Stephen Paddock's suite at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas police officers far from the scene were already sharing cell phone photos of the dead Oct. 1 gunman.
Frontier jet safely returns to Las Vegas after losing engine piece
Frontier jet safely returns to Las Vegas after losing engine piece. (@FlightAlerts_)
Park Service plans ahead for lower lake levels
National Park Service releases new plans to maintain access to the water as Lake Mead continues to shrink.
Women claim abuse at Florence McClure Women's Correctional Facility
Current and ex-inmates, including Merry West, are suing Florence McClure Women’s Correctional Facility, claiming abuse and inadequate medical care. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @rookie__rae
Butte County Sheriff's Office Body Cam Footage
Bodycam video from Butte County (Calif.) Sheriff's Office Deputy Aaron Parmley, who was in Paradise November 8 helping with evacuations. (Butte County Sheriff's Office)
NDOT construction blasting along State Route 106
NDOT construction blasting along State Route 160, near Mt. Potosi Road, in Clark County as part of a $59 million, 6-mile-long highway widening project that began this summer. (Nevada Department of Transportation)
Car crashes into Papa Murphy's Pizza shop
A driver crashed a car into a western Las Vegas Valley pizza shop on Tuesday morning, police said. (Joe Stanhibel/Special to Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Low-lake-level pumping station nears completion
Barnard Construction and the Southern Nevada Water Authority give one last tour before the new low-lake-level pumping station is activated.
Trailer: Valley of Fires
Sultan’s Playroom from Make-A-Wish Southern Nevada
Make-A-Wish Southern Nevada’s Scott Rosenzweig talks about granting Sultan Bouras Souissi’s wish, and what went into building it. (John Hornberg/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like