Scandal, Dem with money could doom Republicans in Clark Senate District 9

Republicans hoping their party can hang onto control of State Senate District 9 in Clark County face a new challenge, in addition to their own scandal-tarred primary battle.

Democratic newcomer Benjamin Yerushalmi raised more than twice as much money as Republican incumbent Dennis Nolan from January through May, the first financial reporting period of 2010.

Campaign finance reports on file with the Clark County Election Department show Yerushalmi, a jeweler and small business owner, raised $144,240 during the period, with big contributions from major players in Nevada politics.

Nolan, who is caught up in a scandal in which he is alleged to have offered money to the sister of a rape victim to induce her to take back allegations one of his friends committed the assault, raised $58,500.

Republican Elizabeth Halseth, another newcomer to politics, has been fanning the flames of the Nolan scandal to help her own candidacy. Her finance report shows she raised $18,565 in cash and spent $12,854. Halseth also reported $15,730 in in-kind contributions.

Major contributors to Yerushalmi include Frank Fertitta III, a Station Casinos executive who gave $5,000, the Clark County Education Association which gave $4,000, Friends of Steven Horsford which gave $2,500 and the John Oceguera Campaign Account which gave $1,000.

Yerushalmi has reported spending $44,277.

Benjamin Yerushalmi’s contribution report

Dennis Nolan’s contribution report

Elizabeth Halseth’s contribution report

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