Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2010 | 2 p.m.
Nine years after leaving office, former President Bill Clinton still knows how to fire up a crowd.
Democrat Rory Reid hopes that's enough to turn the tide in Nevada's race for governor.
Clinton visited Las Vegas today to fundraise and rally for Reid, who has trailed Republican Brian Sandoval in the polls since the race began.
"The other fellow looks great in a suit," Clinton said about Sandoval. "He is handsome, but we don't have a clue what he's going to do. It's no accident one candidate has put out a detailed plan."
The crowd of about 1,300 that was gathered at the House of Blues in Mandalay Bay cheered. Most were Reid supporters and volunteers, a fact not lost on Clinton.
Rather than lobby the already friendly crowd to vote for Reid, Clinton urged the group to campaign for Reid. Constant attack ads on television have turned voters off, he said. Clinton said Reid needs supporters to explain to their friends and neighbors why he is the better candidate.
Clinton also offered ideas for how to turn the state's finances around. Diversifying the economy by investing in green energy -- an idea touted by Reid -- is key, Clinton said.
"Look, the sun shines and the wind blows here," Clinton said. "You're sitting on a gold mine that will put everybody to work."
Reid said little during the rally. He took the stage for only a few minutes before Clinton appeared, using his time to bash Sandoval. Reid called his opponent a weak leader and said he has never balanced a budget or created a job. He also accused Sandoval of working for lobbyists and special interest groups.
Reid spoke more about his positions and plans for Nevada after the rally. He appeared to change his stance slightly on taxes.
Reid has vowed not to raise taxes, and his proposed budget includes no new taxes or fees. But when asked whether he would veto a budget that includes tax hikes, Reid wouldn't commit.
"It depends on what it is," Reid said. "I'm going to do what I think is right."
Sandoval has said he would veto any budget with tax increases. Reid called Sandoval's promise "political rhetoric."