Hmmm: Rubio snags Las Vegas Review-Journal endorsement for NV caucuses

posted at 5:21 pm on February 5, 2016 by Ed Morrissey

Last year, Republican candidates engaged in what was occasionally called the Sheldon Adelson primary, meeting with the deep-pocketed casino mogul to win his backing. Several of them met with Adelson last April, but other than occasional rumors about his preferences, Adelson has remained uncommitted. Instead, Adelson bought Nevada’s largest newspaper, the Las Vegas Review-Journal, in a move that had media outlets concerned over the independence of its reporting.

Today, the story lines converged as the LVRJ issued a presidential endorsement ahead of the Nevada caucuses scheduled in less than three weeks, the first such endorsement of the Adelson era. Or do the story lines have anything to do with each other at all? In their endorsement of Marco Rubio, the editors explicitly deny that Adelson had any influence on their decision:

After much consideration, the Review-Journal is endorsing Sen. Marco Rubio for Nevada’s first-in-the-West Republican caucus on Feb. 23. The RJ met with Sen. Rubio on Oct. 9, two months before the announcement of the newspaper’s sale to the family of Las Vegas Sands Chairman and CEO Sheldon Adelson. The Adelsons have detached themselves from our endorsement process, and our endorsement of Sen. Rubio does not represent the support of the family.

How credible is that? Well, as the saying goes … money talksif not exactly endorses:

Billionaire casino magnate Sheldon Adelson and his wife Miriam have not yet made public contributions to any of the super PACs flanking the 2016 presidential candidates. But they offered one indication of one White House hopeful who intrigues them: each gave the $2,700 maximum to Sen. Ted Cruz’s presidential campaign in mid-November.

In an email, Adelson adviser Andy Abboud said the donations should not viewed as a sign that the Adelsons had settled on a single contender to get behind, adding they had given to “several” candidates. In March, they maxed out to Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, who has since dropped out of the race.

According to Open Secrets, the Adelsons also maxed out to Rubio, but in January 2015 at the very beginning of the 2016 cycle. At the same time, both dropped $5,000 into the Rubio-supporting Reclaim America PAC, which is chump change for the two superdonors. Graham’s donations came a couple of months later, all of which took place prior to the closed-door sessions last April. Since then, or at least through the end of December, the Adelsons have done nothing in the presidential primary except to goose Cruz’ hard-money fundraising in mid-November as noted by the Washington Post this week. A subsequent check of FEC data turned up nothing else, either.

With that settled, let’s go back to the substance of the endorsement:

Sen. Rubio agrees that the federal government owns too much land within Nevada’s borders — more than 80 percent — and doesn’t actively and appropriately manage that land. He believes the lack of privately owned land in Nevada and across the West greatly limits economic opportunity, and he supports transferring some federal land to private ownership. “There’s no need for Washington to hold that much land,” he told us.

On immigration, Sen. Rubio backs a reasonable approach to fix a broken system, while noting that legal immigration deserves just as much attention as illegal immigration. Among other reforms, he wants a merit-based system of legal immigration to replace today’s family-based system.

Sen. Rubio also recognizes that entitlement reform is a must if Medicare and Social Security are to avoid insolvency. “If we deal with them now, we don’t have to change them for current beneficiaries,” he said. And on economic policy, Sen. Rubio understands that everything a presidential administration does influences the economy. Tax reform and simplification (for both corporations and individuals) are just one part of his pro-growth agenda, which includes dialing back burdensome federal regulations, an energy policy that allows America to lead the world in oil and gas production, and a health care policy to replace Obamacare and give Americans the ability to tailor health insurance plans to their needs.

Electability is also in Sen. Rubio’s favor. Mr. Trump and Sen. Cruz, the leading GOP candidates at this point, have liabilities in November, when everyone has the chance to vote. Sen. Rubio has the ideas and the charisma to bring independents and moderates under the GOP tent.

Frankly, with Rand Paul out, one might assume Cruz would be the most likely candidate to benefit. Nevada’s conservatives have a libertarian bent to them, and Cruz has positioned himself between Paul and Rubio on their favorite issues. There hasn’t been much polling in Nevada up to now, at least not as captured by RCP, which doesn’t have enough data points to produce an average. The only poll listed in the last three months (Gravis) puts Rubio in third place behind Trump and Cruz, but this obviously comes before much of Cruz’ late momentum and well before any of Rubio’s.

The LVRJ endorsement might provide a spark for Rubio, especially given the extensive explanation offered in the state’s largest newspaper. But the real test will come on Tuesday in New Hampshire and then in South Carolina on the 20th. If Rubio scores big in both contests, he might have enough momentum to win Nevada’s caucuses, too. If not, this endorsement probably won’t matter.


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Comments

Electability is also in Sen. McCain’s Romney’s Sen. Rubio’s favor

RockyMtnGirl on February 5, 2016 at 5:27 PM

Zoom zoom…

Neitherleftorright on February 5, 2016 at 5:28 PM

Rubio has ZERO chance to win the general.

fossten on February 5, 2016 at 5:28 PM

Las Vegas LOVES cheap foreign Labor.

libfreesMom on February 5, 2016 at 5:29 PM

Didn’t he grow up in Vegas. Hometown endorsement

justonevictory on February 5, 2016 at 5:30 PM

Viva Las Marco.

libfreesMom on February 5, 2016 at 5:31 PM

Wow, the endorsements keep coming for Rubio. NH polls tightening too. Marcomentum.

Dan333 on February 5, 2016 at 5:32 PM

Marxo RINIO and senate gang of 8 member is on a roll to the RINO loser retirement home.

bgibbs1000 on February 5, 2016 at 5:36 PM

There’s hope for illegals everywhere. Syrian “refugees” are watching the polls with great excitement (they’re getting tired of Swedish and German women). I wonder if they know many American women are armed?

darwin on February 5, 2016 at 5:36 PM

Wake me up when he actually wins something…

mjbrooks3 on February 5, 2016 at 5:37 PM

Shiat. Elvis could endorse rubio from vegas and id still say NO!

Indiana Jim on February 5, 2016 at 5:38 PM

In March, they maxed out to Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, who has since dropped out of the race.

Well that speaks volumes..

bazil9 on February 5, 2016 at 5:39 PM

“Rubio has ZERO chance to win the general”

Bet on that if you like!
http://www.oddsshark.com/entertainment/us-presidential-odds-2016-futures

mooseygoosey on February 5, 2016 at 5:39 PM

Shiat. Elvis could endorse rubio from vegas and id still say NO!

Indiana Jim on February 5, 2016 at 5:38 PM

lol

bazil9 on February 5, 2016 at 5:39 PM

Rubio also has the Frank Luntz endorsement…

… it only cost $300,000

-this is a fact-

mjbrooks3 on February 5, 2016 at 5:39 PM

“Rubio has ZERO chance to win the general”

Bet on that if you like!
http://www.oddsshark.com/entertainment/us-presidential-odds-2016-futures

mooseygoosey on February 5, 2016 at 5:39 PM

Nice.

petunia on February 5, 2016 at 5:41 PM

Please Lord,

I ask Thee for very little…

May You grant Mitt Romney to endorse Kasich?

…or Bush would also do.

Amen

mjbrooks3 on February 5, 2016 at 5:42 PM

Rubio has ZERO chance to win the general.

fossten on February 5, 2016 at 5:28 PM

Not true, the Dem candidate can just croak up right before the election. Seriously, Rubio can win; the question is, how much daylight are there between him and Hitlery on important issues? IMHO, not enough to bother voting.

Rix on February 5, 2016 at 5:43 PM

If Adelson owns casinos, he’s probably feeling the “bern” from the tRump Tower, and wants to limit the Donald’s cash flow.

Rubio has ZERO chance to win the general.

fossten on February 5, 2016 at 5:28 PM

Fossten needs to read some polls. In the RCP average,

Rubio 48 Clinton 43 R+5
Cruz 46.7 Clinton 45.7 R+1
Trump 43 Clinton 47 D+4

Things might change between now and November, but as of now Rubio has the BEST chance to win the general election.

Steve Z on February 5, 2016 at 5:44 PM

Las Vegas LOVES cheap foreign Labor.

libfreesMom

They also love a guy who will protect their casinos from having to compete with internet gambling.

xblade on February 5, 2016 at 5:45 PM

newspapers never endorse right-wing candidates. They are filled with journalists, after all. And those are people who went to journalism school. Think about the kids you knew, if you knew any, who went to journalism school. Do you think they know what is best for the country? Would you allow them to make your decisions for you?

This is why you use newspapers to line bird cages or for packing fragile contents. The last time I bought a newspaper, it was because i was sending something in the mail and I needed stuffing.

HugoDrax on February 5, 2016 at 5:45 PM

Trump Senior Adviser: Rubio the Candidate of ‘The Open Borders Syndicate’; Represents ‘Obama’s Third Term

and I have been posting exactly that (Obama’s 3rd term) for a week, then the left admitted it, and now Trump’s campaign has picked up on it.

Senator Philip Bluster on February 5, 2016 at 5:46 PM

Fossten needs to read some polls. In the RCP average,

Rubio 48 Clinton 43 R+5
Cruz 46.7 Clinton 45.7 R+1
Trump 43 Clinton 47 D+4

Things might change between now and November, but as of now Rubio has the BEST chance to win the general election.

Steve Z on February 5, 2016 at 5:44 PM

How’s he going to win without 25% or more of his base? I won’t show up and everybody I know won’t either.

fossten on February 5, 2016 at 5:50 PM

BREAKING: Phyllis Schlafly Issues 15 Page ‘Rubio Betrayal Memo’

Phyllis Schlafly was the first major conservative to endorse Marco Rubio for US Senator over Governor Charlie Crist.

Yesterday Phyllis Shlafly said freshman Senator Marco Rubio should be disqualified from the presidential race for lying to conservatives in English and saying something entirely different on Spanish language television.

Schlafly is releasing a 15 page “Rubio Betrayal Memo” Friday to denounce Rubio’s actions as US Senator. Check Eagle Forum for updates.

We will post as soon as the document is uploaded.

Schlafly supports Donald Trump for President.
http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2016/02/breaking-phyllis-schlafly-issues-15-page-rubio-betrayal-memo/

Garyinaz66 on February 5, 2016 at 5:52 PM

fossten on February 5, 2016 at 5:50 PM

Closet leftist?

Neitherleftorright on February 5, 2016 at 5:52 PM

Isn’t this the same newspaper that has been endorsing Harry Reid?

bgibbs1000 on February 5, 2016 at 5:53 PM

How’s he going to win without 25% or more of his base? I won’t show up and everybody I know won’t either.

fossten on February 5, 2016 at 5:50 PM

Rubio will be Romney x’s 2 with regards to base staying home…

mjbrooks3 on February 5, 2016 at 5:53 PM

Not true, the Dem candidate can just croak up right before the election. Seriously, Rubio can win; the question is, how much daylight are there between him and Hitlery on important issues? IMHO, not enough to bother voting.

Rix on February 5, 2016 at 5:43 PM

Right on Rix. Voting only if your fav wins the GOP nod… hello President Clinton.

Dan333 on February 5, 2016 at 5:53 PM

Hillary amnesty proposal will be much easier to defeat than Rubio amnesty proposal…

mjbrooks3 on February 5, 2016 at 5:54 PM

Isn’t this the same newspaper that has been endorsing Harry Reid?

bgibbs1000 on February 5, 2016 at 5:53 PM

I should have checked on that before posting as they did endorse Sharon Angle in the last election.

Still though RINIO?

bgibbs1000 on February 5, 2016 at 5:55 PM

headline…

Leftist LV newspaper owned by wealthy Rubio contributor endorses Boobio. news at 11.

On immigration, Sen. Rubio backs a reasonable approach to fix a broken system,

seriously, ANYONE who buys that bullsheet is an anti-American corporatist, globalist turncoat.

Senator Philip Bluster on February 5, 2016 at 5:57 PM

If RINIO is the nominee or even a VP on either a Cruz or Trump ticket I’m not voting.

bgibbs1000 on February 5, 2016 at 5:57 PM

Right on Rix. Voting only if your fav wins the GOP nod… hello President Clinton.

Dan333 on February 5, 2016 at 5:53 PM

GOP congress will act like conservatives to defeat Clinton…

GOP congress will act like liberals to help Rubio succeed…

mjbrooks3 on February 5, 2016 at 5:57 PM

Things might change between now and November, but as of now Rubio has the BEST chance to win the general election.

Steve Z on February 5, 2016 at 5:44 PM

National polls, although interesting, don’t say much now. Think you’d agree, Steve.

Will be fascinating to see how NH, SD and Nevada play out…big issues still in Trump’s wheelhouse if he can sharpen his message and avoid more scrapes with Cruz (which only helps GOPe) – illegal immigration and a US economy on life support.

Last quarter GDP at .7% and a stock market being savaged by black box traders..seems like it gives Trump a big leg up vis a vis the traditional pols.

WestportSC on February 5, 2016 at 5:59 PM

How’s he going to win without 25% or more of his base? I won’t show up and everybody I know won’t either.

fossten on February 5, 2016 at 5:50 PM

Rubio will be Romney x’s 2 with regards to base staying home…

mjbrooks3 on February 5, 2016 at 5:53 PM

romney was the last “hold my nose” and vote candidate I will ever cast a ballot for.

If they will not deport illegals I will not vote for them.

Anything other than deporting illegals creates a permanent imported democrat voting majority and I will not vote for it just because its a republican killing the country instead of a democrat.

There is only one choice if we want to try to save the country, its Trump.

Garyinaz66 on February 5, 2016 at 6:00 PM

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.

tej on February 5, 2016 at 6:03 PM

I think Arizonans are more libertarian than Nevadans. One of the issues they do have in common, besides illegal immigration, is a loathing for the BLM.

Misha on February 5, 2016 at 6:06 PM

Regardless of who you support, we must NOT vote for anyone in the general that we didn’t support in the primary.

We need to teach them a lesson!1!!

Neitherleftorright on February 5, 2016 at 6:08 PM

Rubio = Political Gigolo

huckleberryfriend on February 5, 2016 at 6:19 PM

Right on Rix. Voting only if your fav wins the GOP nod… hello President Clinton.

Dan333 on February 5, 2016 at 5:53 PM

Isn’t that exactly what you establishment swine plan to do for Trump, amirite?

Rix on February 5, 2016 at 6:36 PM

How’s he going to win without 25% or more of his base? I won’t show up and everybody I know won’t either.

fossten on February 5, 2016 at 5:50 PM

Right on, no way will I vote again for that runty, lying, little POS.

BeachBum on February 5, 2016 at 6:37 PM

If RINIO is the nominee or even a VP on either a Cruz or Trump ticket I’m not voting.

bgibbs1000 on February 5, 2016 at 5:57 PM

I really wouldn’t go as far. VP has very low influence on actual affairs of the state. He’s more of a show pony for the election time, and maybe a future Prez option. I could live with Trump/Rubio ticket. In eight years, the Wall will be so much a part of the reality, even President Rubio won’t be able to kill it.

Rix on February 5, 2016 at 6:38 PM

Right on Rix. Voting only if your fav wins the GOP nod… hello President Clinton.

Dan333 on February 5, 2016 at 5:53 PM

The “lesser of two evils” card is maxxed out. I think people are generally just tired of endorsing “evil” of any sort.

whatcat on February 5, 2016 at 6:44 PM

No surprise. Rubio has strong ties to NV, his famous “baratender dad” worked at a LV casino. Also, Rubio used to be Mormon.

Aslans Girl on February 5, 2016 at 7:00 PM

“The owner of this newspaper, one of the richest men on earth, also supports this candidate, but that had absolutely nothing to do with our decision to endorse this idiot ¡Marco! ¡Jebio!”.

Redstone on February 5, 2016 at 7:24 PM

Big whooop…

Mcguyver on February 5, 2016 at 7:40 PM

Did he become a Mormon, again?

Also, who is Rubio?

Schadenfreude on February 5, 2016 at 7:41 PM

Also, Rubio used to be Mormon.

Aslans Girl on February 5, 2016 at 7:00 PM

Is that a problem??..:)

Dire Straits on February 5, 2016 at 7:49 PM

I think Phyllis Schlafly’s soon to be out 15 page Rubio Betrayal Memo will have more of an impact on the race than the LVRJ endorsement.

Dusty on February 5, 2016 at 8:05 PM

Also, Rubio used to be Mormon.

Aslans Girl on February 5, 2016 at 7:00 PM
Is that a problem??..:)

Dire Straits on February 5, 2016 at 7:49 PM

Is Jeff Sessions an Evangelical? That would explain a whole lot.

And Phyllis Schlafly, is she an Evangelical?

I think I see what’s up.

Rubio is a Catholic. You would think his rejection of Mormonism would make you happy. But just the whiff of it disqualifies him?

Yes, this is explaining why the record of Cruz and Rubio are almost identical, but one is rejected and the other embraced, even in the face of hypocritical fraud.

Wow. You people are really really deep.

petunia on February 5, 2016 at 8:31 PM

And since when is Phyllis Schllafly support Gay marriage. She is supporting Trump? Wow. That is some kind of problem you all have.

petunia on February 5, 2016 at 8:34 PM