Kucinich forced to sit out

Less than an hour before long-shot candidate Dennis Kucinich was to take the stage, the Nevada Supreme Court announced that MSNBC could exclude the Ohio congressman from Tuesday evening’s Democratic presidential debate.

Lawyers for NBC Universal Inc. had asked the court to overturn a lower court’s ruling ordering the cable network to allow Kucinich to participate in the debate or cancel the broadcast.

The Supreme Court unanimously ruled that alternate District Judge J. Charles Thompson overstepped his authority when he signed an order requiring the network to allow Kucinich to take part in the debate with Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John Edwards.

Thompson had ruled that NBC Universal broke its contract with Kucinich when it barred him from taking part in the debate. Thompson signed a temporary restraining order Tuesday morning against NBC Universal.

The Supreme Court determined that the lower court had “abused its discretion in determining that a contract existed between the parties.”

And in a footnote, it wrote that the lower court’s ruling was an “unconstitutional prior restraint” on NBC’s First Amendment rights.

Kucinich vowed to fight on after he received news of the decision, which might mean filing a complaint with the Federal Communications Commission or appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court.

“We are going to persist,” he said. “No one should be shocked by this. No one should be surprised. This is how it works.”

Speaking outside Cashman Center, Kucinich accused NBC, which he called “the media arm” of General Electric and defense contractor Raytheon, of excluding him because of his stance against nuclear energy and the Iraq war. “Why would they want someone to question (these things)? It’s a threat to their bottom line,” he said. “This is a real danger to our democracy.”

Kucinich also was barred from the Jan. 5 debate in New Hampshire even after filing a complaint with the Federal Communications Commission arguing that the American Broadcasting Co. violated equal-time provisions by keeping him out of that debate.

The Supreme Court’s decision brought an end to several tense hours of waiting. Four justices in Las Vegas and three in Carson City heard arguments from attorneys during an hour-long emergency hearing that began at 1:30 p.m.

The court announced its decision a little after 5 p.m. The debate was scheduled to begin at 6 p.m.

Attorney Don Campbell, who represented NBC and argued before the Supreme Court, said the court’s decision amounted to a First Amendment victory.

“I think the decision shows the court’s sensitivity to this very important issue,” he said.

Kucinich on Monday filed a complaint with the district court claiming that NBC broke its contract with him when it rescinded an offer to allow him on the stage with the other candidates. He also claimed that the network wasn’t following federal requirements providing for equal time for candidates.

The invitation was extended on Jan. 9 to presidential candidates who finished at least fourth in the Iowa caucuses or the New Hampshire primary.

New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson came in fourth in New Hampshire and Iowa but later dropped out. Sens. Chris Dodd and Joe Biden, who also fared better than Kucinich in Iowa, also dropped out.

Kucinich received zero delegates in Iowa and about 1 percent of the vote in New Hampshire.

On Friday, Chuck Todd, NBC News’ political director, sent the Kucinich campaign an e-mail rescinding the invitation, according to court documents.

“The people of Nevada would be better served by including him (Kucinich) in the debate,” said William McGaha, Kucinich’s attorney.

Campbell argued that the district court didn’t have jurisdiction over the matter. He also argued that NBC wasn’t breaching FCC rules because the Federal Communications Act doesn’t apply to debates broadcast on cable television outlets such as MSNBC.

“We are not dealing with a broadcast station,” he said during the hearing.

“They (MSNBC) are cable.”

Kucinich attended the Supreme Court hearing but declined to comment after the proceedings.

Campbell also argued that the government shouldn’t force a media outlet to give access to a candidate.

“Mr. Kucinich’s claim … undermines the wide journalistic freedoms enjoyed by news organizations under the First Amendment,” Campbell stated in court documents.

Contact reporter David Kihara at dkihara@reviewjournal.com or (702) 380-1039.

NSPCA Gets Kittens From LA
Man killed during road-rage incident
Las Vegas police are looking for two men involved in the shooting death of a man outside a 7-Eleven story at Bonanza Road and Maryland Parkway on Nov. 12, 2018. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System hosts Veterans Day Car Show and BBQ
The 4th Annual Veterans Day Car Show and BBQ is held in celebration of Veterans Day at the VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System Medical Center in North Las Vegas, Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018. (Caroline Brehman/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Wildfires in Southern California
Wildfires hit Ventura County, Calif., on Nov. 9, 2018. (Richard Brian/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Dedication of Nevada's Battle Born memorial
The state of Nevada on Friday dedicated its Battle Born memorial honoring 895 state residents who have died in America’s wars.
Las Vegas police and Sunrise Children's Hospital hope to prevent infant deaths
The Metropolitan Police Department and Sunrise Children's Hospital held a press conference to get the message out on preventable infant deaths attributed to "co-sleeping" and other unsafe sleeping habits. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
No serious injuries after car hits tree in south Las Vegas
One person reported minor injuries but wasn’t hospitalized after a Wednesday morning crash in the south valley.
Nellis Air Force Base keeps airmen fed
Nellis Air Force Bass airmen have delicious and healthy food items, and a variety of dining facilities to choose from. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Suspicious package found at central Las Vegas post office
Las Vegas police determined that a suspicious package found Monday morning at a central valley post office was not a threat.
Suspicious package found at central Las Vegas post office
Police evacuated the area around the Garside Station post office early Monday morning near Oakey and Decatur boulevards.
With husband's passing, family in limbo for workers' comp claim
Meredith Tracy's husand, Russell Tracy, died more than a year ago on his first day working for a new company when he fell 22 feet into a manhole that was not properly safeguarded. His employer was fined $82,000 in penalties for unsafe practices, but the company has denied her workers' compensation claim, leaving her with no compensation since the death. Rachel Aston Las Vegas Review-Journal @rookie__rae
With husband's passing, family in limbo for workers' comp claim
Meredith Tracy's husand, Russell Tracy, died more than a year ago on his first day working for a new company when he fell 22 feet into a manhole that was not properly safeguarded. His employer was fined $82,000 in penalties for unsafe practices, but the company has denied her workers' compensation claim, leaving her with no compensation since the death. Rachel Aston Las Vegas Review-Journal @rookie__rae
Las Vegas family shares flu warning
Carlo and Brenda Occhipinti lost their son, Carlo Jr., or “Junior,” to the flu last year.
Author Randall Cannon shares an anecdote about Stadust Raceway
Author Randall Cannon shares an anecdote about Dan Blocker, who played Hoss Cartwright on the TV show "Bonanza," and the actor's passion for auto racing at Stardust International Raceway in Las Vegas during the 1960s. (Ron Kantowski/Las Vegas Review-Journal.)
Project Neon 85 percent complete
On Wednesday morning Oct. 31, Interstate 15 northbound lane restrictions were removed opening up Exit 41 to Charleston Blvd. On Thursday Nov. 1, Interstate 15 southbound lane restrictions were removed. The new southbound off-ramp to Sahara Ave. and Highland Dr. also opened Thursday, November 1. With Project Neon 85% finished the flow of traffic on Interstate 15 has substantially diminished. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Girl killed after jumping from bridge onto 215 Beltway in Henderson
Eastbound lanes of the 215 Beltway are shut down by the Nevada Highway Patrol after a female juvenile jumped from the 215 overpass at Stephanie and was struck by a FedEx tractor trailer. Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal @Vegas88s
Kristallnacht story
An interview with 94-year-old Holocaust survivor Alexander Kuechel who survived seven concentration camps and didn’t leave Germany until after World War II was over. (Mia Sims/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
1 dead in central Las Vegas crash
An early Wednesday morning crash left at least one person dead and another injured. The crash was reported just around 3 a.m. at the intersection of Flamingo Road and Swenson Street. At least two vehicles were involved in the crash, one of which caught fire. Debris was scattered across the intersection as police combed the area as they investigated the scene. Flamingo is blocked in both directions between Swenson and Cambridge Street. Northbound Swenson is blocked at the intersection.
Richard Knoeppel named the 2018 Nevada Teacher of the Year
Richard Knoeppel, an architecture design instructor at the Advanced technologies Academy, named the 2018 Nevada Teacher of the Year on Monday, Oct. 29, 2018. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Mojave Poppy Bees
(Zach Portman/University of Minnesota Department of Entomology) Male Mojave poppy bees exhibit territorial fighting behavior. The Center for Biological Diversity wants the bee, found only in Clark County, to be added to the endangered species list.
Clark County Schools announce random searches
Clark County School District middle and high school students will be subject to random searches for weapons under a new initiative to combat the wave of guns found on campus. (Amelia Pak-Harvey/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Ron Jeremy and Heidi Fleiss React to Dennis Hof's Death
Ron Jeremy and Heidi Fleiss speak about their friend and prominent brothel owner Dennis Hof's death at Dennis Hof's Love Ranch. (Benjamin Hager/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Nevada brothel owner Dennis Hof has died
Nevada brothel owner and Republican candidate for Nevada State Assembly District 36, Dennis Hof has died. He was 72. Nye County Sherriff's office confirmed. Hof owned Love Ranch brothel, located in Crystal, Nevada.
Las Vegas police investigate suspicious package at shopping center
Las Vegas police evacuated a southeast valley shopping center at Flamingo and Sandhill roads early Tuesday morning while they investigated reports of a suspicious package. (Max Michor/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
The Las Vegas Metro hosts the K-9 Trials
The Las Vegas Metro K-9 Trials returns to the Orleans Arena to benefit the Friends For Las Vegas Police K-9 group.
Kingman residents love their little town
Residents of Kingman, Ariz. talk about how they ended up living in the Route 66 town, and what they love about their quiet community. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Service at Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery
Twelve unclaimed veterans are honored at Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Boulder City in Oct. 9, 2018. (Briana Erickson/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas house prices reach highest level in 11 years
Las Vegas house prices are rising But so is the amount of available homes on the market Still, properties priced below $300,000 are selling fast And September was the first time since June 2007 that the median house price reached the $300,000 mark Las Vegas home prices have been rising at one of the fastest rates in the country over the past year Recent data show the market is now less affordable than the national average
National Night Out
About 100 Summerlin residents gathered at Park Centre Dr. in Summerlin on Tuesday for National Night Out. Lt. Joshua Bitsko with Las Vegas Metro, played with 3-year-old David who was dressed as a police officer. Face painting, fire truck tours and more kept kids busy as parents roamed behind them. (Mia Sims/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Rural homeless issue comes to a head in Pahrump
On Sept. 12, Pahrump sheriff deputies told residents of a homeless encampment on private property that they had 15 minutes to vacate and grab their belongings. That decision might face some legal consequences. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
News Headlines
Local Spotlight
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like