Nevada Democrats at War as Party Row Threatens to Upend 2024 Efforts

AP Photo/John Locher

In March 2021, the entire staff of the Nevada Democratic Party resigned after the Democratic Socialists of America engineered a coup at the party convention that swept them into power.

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Establishment Democrats were shocked. This was the party built by Nevada’s Democratic Patron Saint, Sen. Harry Reid. Reid took a moribund, lifeless party in the 1980s and turned it into a powerhouse political machine by the turn of the 21st century.

The Nevada Independent news site editorialized, “Say Goodbye to the Most Effective Democratic Party in the Country.” Indeed, an anonymous Democratic staffer who resigned rather than work with the socialists was quoted as saying, “I knew I couldn’t work with her and watch her destroy the years of hard work so many operatives put into making our state party the best state party in the country.”

The “her” mentioned by the staffer is Judith Whitmer, an unabashed socialist. Whitmer is running for chairman again in a week but this time, the opposition forces are much better organized. Assemblywoman Daniele Monroe-Moreno of Las Vegas is challenging Whitmer and has lined up an impressive list of powerful state Democrats.

Las Vegas Review-Journal:

With about one week until the election, the state’s top elected officials have gotten involved again. Cortez Masto and all of Nevada’s Democratic congressional delegation — including Sen. Jacky Rosen and Reps. Steven Horsford, Susie Lee and Dina Titus — endorsed Monroe-Moreno, according to a statement from Cortez Masto’s campaign released Friday.

The Silver State’s top Democratic constitutional officers, Secretary of State Cisco Aguilar, Treasurer Zach Conine and Attorney General Aaron Ford, also endorsed Monroe-Moreno and her “Democratic Unity” slate.

Monroe-Moreno also announced endorsements on Friday from more than 100 party activists, labor leaders, central committee members and local elected leaders, including top state legislators like Assembly Speaker Steve Yeager and Senate Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro, both D-Las Vegas.

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That’s a lot of muscle, and Monroe-Moreno doesn’t have to convince people that a change is needed.

Related: The Pennsylvania State House Has Fallen to the Democrats

After the socialists took power in 2021, the establishment licked their wounds and formed a counterrevolutionary group: the Washoe County Democratic party known as Nevada Democratic Victory. That group worked on most of the high-profile races in the 2022 cycle that Democrats won and that Whitmer is taking credit for.

Whitmer also tried to purge members who didn’t agree with her.

Whitmer drew criticism from fellow Democrats when members of the central committee, the governing body of the Nevada Democratic Party, learned they had been removed from the committee weeks ahead of the officer elections. Whitmer said the removals were standard procedure conducted by the secretary when members fail to attend two meetings in a row. Since then some members have been reinstated after proving they attended the meetings.

Yeager, for instance, had been removed but said on Twitter he had been reinstated after he forwarded along an email showing his registration for a meeting. Even after the mix-up was resolved, Yeager said he was “dismayed” the situation happened in the first place and will be voting for “much needed new leadership.”

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Whitmer still has the endorsement of some powerful Democratic organizations, including the chairmen of the largest county organizations in the state. And there’s still the residual radical left presence on the board from her victory two years ago.

It will be close but if Nevada Democrats want to win in 2024, they’ll vote for sanity and toss Whitmer out.

 

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