The paean to the prince of political payoffs and paybacks continues apace after more than seven pages were devoted in the paper delivered in Sunday driveways to the retirement of Harry Reid after three decades in the Senate.
Today’s piece occupies a majority of the front page and an entire inside page covering his various dabbles into local businesses.
It opens with Reid making phone calls to various banks in 2009 when it looked like the MGM construction of CityCenter was going to be shut down due to the recession. The tale doesn’t say what Reid said to those banks who came to the table and negotiated to allow construction to continue.
Later the story hints at what he might’ve said when he recounts what happened when he browbeat a Nevada power company into halting plans to build new job-creating coal-fired power plants and some businesses started campaigning against him.
“But I called some of them — most of those places were owned by hedge funds and equity firms — and I called whoever they were and I said, ‘You go ahead and do this, but you’re going to pay big time because I’m going to do everything I can to try to mess with your businesses,’” he proudly told the reporter. “And they quit, every one of them, quit, withdrew. So my threats worked. But I was serious about that.”
He has been said to have used similar tactics in the past against against certain bankers who also owned businesses in Nevada.
In the 2010 election campaign MGM’s CEO Jim Murren was on the list of Republicans for Reid.