Monday, Sept. 22, 2008 | 11 a.m.
WASHINGTON -- Greetings, Early Liners. On the other end of my cell phone Saturday afternoon was a Las Vegas caller fuming mad about the Bush administration’s $700 bailout of Wall Street.
Apparently, he’s not alone.
Skeptical taxpayers are scrutinizing what experts say is the biggest government interaction in the market since the Great Depression, and finding themselves trapped in a Rumsfeldian-like maze of known unknowns about what this means to our pocketbooks.
Congress is under tremendous pressure this week to quickly pass the bailout plan that would enable the government to scoop up the rotten mortgage-backed securities Wall Street can no longer unload in hopes of keeping the economy from gridlock.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and his counterpart in the House, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, agree broadly that the bailout is needed to prevent the economy from seizing up. Without credit flowing to Wall Street, growth will essentially cease. But they are trying to shoehorn in more direct assistance for Main Street, while also limiting golden parachutes for executives.
Democrats, though, are getting pushback from Republican leaders not to pile too many extras onto the bill.
Here’s this morning’s latest push from Bush as he tries to explain the broader implications of doing nothing and the need for swift action.
We’ll hear more from Reid in just a couple of hours here as he opens the Senate.
On Wednesday, Nevada Rep. Dean Heller will have a front-row seat to the action when the House Financial Services committee takes up the rescue bill.
As if you need anything else besides your bank statement to read this morning, here’s some of the other interesting political reporting from the weekend papers in Nevada:
-- As the fall campaigns get fully underway, the Sun digs deeper into the always interesting race for the Henderson congressional seat with early-life profiles of the candidates.
Be sure to see the cute little kid photos.
-- The Sun’s David McGrath Schwartz tells us that County Commission Chairman Rory Reid’s trip north was more than just a listening tour: "… but really about Reid’s broadcasting he is serious about a run for governor in 2010. The subtext of his stomp across the state was this: I’m the big dog, and you better think twice about taking me on. Privately, those close to Reid, 46, say he is all in."
--- The R-J says President Bush and Republican presidential candidate John McCain will both be in Nevada on Oct. 2, but nowhere near one another. Not a surprise as the contender is distancing himself from the unpopular incumbent.
-- Schwartz and colleague Sam Skolnik report that we may not see the end of the Goodman name in City Hall when Mayor Oscar Goodman is term-limited out in 2011. The mayor suggests his wife, Carolyn, could fill his shoes. The mayor says he’ll decide by January if he’s going to run for governor. The headline writers ("Hello Mayor! Hello Governor!") had fun with that one.
-- Rep. Shelley Berkley pens an op-ed warning that the nuclear dump lobby is using the pay-raise scandal in the state’s nuclear waste office as a “tool to undermine Nevada’s long-standing opposition to Yucca Mountain.”
-- From the read and weep department: A chart in the Sun shows the year-to-year drop in median price per square foot of residential real state around Las Vegas.
Other interesting reads:
-- The truthfulness of Heller’s first -- and negative -- ad against Democrat Jill Derby, his challenger in the 2nd congressional district race.
-- The AP reported Friday that First Lady Dawn Gibbons wants her husband to pay for private security as part of their divorce proceedings after the governor eliminated government security detail for her and other officials in a cost-cutting move.
-- Schwartz did an interesting takeout here on what Barack Obama’s trips to Elko mean for the Democratic presidential candidate’s chances for extracting votes from the conservative stronghold.
-- Coolican and Mishak hit the streets (and nail salons) with presidential campaign workers over the weekend.
That’s it for now. Check back later for updates.