weather icon Clear

Reid wants to use campaign funds for post-retirement assistant

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid has asked the Federal Election Commission for an opinion on whether he can tap his campaign fund to pay for a full-time assistant after he’s retired from the Senate.

Attorneys for Reid, D-Nevada, sent a letter to the FEC, which regulates campaign finance, on Oct. 22. Reid, who is not running for re-election, will leave office after the November 2016 elections, when voters elect a successor.

“Leader Reid’s legislative and campaign-related activities have been substantial, and as a result, the broad sweep of responsibilities related to those activities will not cease upon the expiration of his term,” says the letter, which seeks an advisory opinion.

The assistant’s work would include organizing and storing archival Senate records, managing correspondence and drafting materials about Reid’s time in office. Reid’s attorneys say the employee won’t be a family member.

“At this time, Leader Reid cannot predict with any degree of certainty when he would expect those tasks to end,” Jonathan Berkon, one of Reid’s Washington, D.C.-based attorneys, wrote in a follow-up email on Oct. 27 to the FEC.

The letter notes the federal government funds similar costs for former speakers of the U.S. House, but not former majority leaders of the U.S. Senate. Reid was Senate majority leader for eight years, becoming the minority leader after Republicans won control of the Senate in the 2014 elections.

The letter also asks if Reid can use funding from the Searchlight Leadership Fund, his leadership PAC, to pay for the costs of “winding down” his office.

Reid’s campaign committee reported having $540,299 cash on hand in its quarterly filing in October for the three-month period ending Sept. 30. Reid’s Searchlight Leadership Fund, which also supports candidates, reported $60,804 cash on hand in its mid-year filing for the period ending June 30.

Contact Ben Botkin at bbotkin@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2904. Find him on Twitter: @BenBotkin1

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
Politics Videos
Trumps Strength is also a Weakness - Video
One of Donald Trump’s greatest strengths — his ability to shape national narratives — is also a great weakness.
Tax the Rich Bus Tour makes a stop in Las Vegas - Video
The Tax the Rich Bus has stopped in Las Vegas as part of its summer tour. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Assemblywoman Daniele Monroe-Moreno hosts BBQ - Video
Assembly Woman Daniele Monroe-Moreno hosts BBQ to bring the community together to hear about the candidates up for election and for people to gather and have fun.
Democrat Virtual Caucus - Video
The Right Take: Biden's Racially Questionable Comments
Joe Biden has uttered racially charged statements for years. Now that he’s the frontrunner for the Democrat presidential nomination, he may finally face prolonged scrutiny for them.
Christopher Rufo Discusses Homelessness In The USA - VIDEO
Christopher Rufo discusses homelessness in the United States and how politicians can work to improve conditions for those with drug addictions.
Clark County 2019 Election Results - Video
The 2019 Elections wrap up in Clark County including an upset in the Boulder City Mayor race.
Greene discusses Read by 3 and Opportunity Scholarships - VIDEO
The Nevada Legislative Session is over and the results are mixed for Nevada students, according to Tom Greene, Senior regional legislative director, Excel in Ed in Action.
The Right Take New Education Funding Plan - VIDEO
On Monday, Senate Education Committee chair Mo Denis, D-Las Vegas, released a new education funding formula. For years, many Democrat politicians have criticized the current education funding formula, called the Nevada Plan. They claim it’s old and outdated. Their biggest beef is that it doesn’t allocate more money for students who are English Language Learners or live in poverty. The theory is that it’s harder to educate those students and so they need additional services, which costs additional money.
Al Gore Speaks At UNLV About Climate Change - Video
Former Vice President of the United States Al Gore talks to an audience at UNLV about the effects of Climate change and how to switch to renewable sources of energy.
Forum on Wages and Working People Highlights - VIDEO
Presidential candidates Elizabeth Warren, Beto O'Rourke, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, Julian Castro, and John Hickenlooper speak in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Nevada Politics Today Valerie Weber - VIDEO
Valerie Weber sits down with Victor Joecks to discuss her policies and why she is running for Ward 2 of the Las Vegas City Council.
County commission cautiously open to working with school district

The Clark County Commission on Thursday signaled a cautious willingness to partner with the Clark County School District on education initiatives that would be funded through a potential quarter-percent sales tax, but stressed the need for accountability, information and easier public access to school grounds.

Clark County official presses Metro for answers about ICE cooperation

While Clark County Commissioners approved 40 supplemental positions for two understaffed jails Tuesday, Commissioner Justin Jones indicated his future support for more hires will be tied to the Metropolitan Police Department clarifying its role in immigration detention.

County wants joint meeting on potential funding to CCSD

Clark County commissioners on Tuesday signaled that they were unwilling to commit any dollars from a potential quarter-cent sales tax hike to the school district without first meeting with trustees on a plan and accountability.