Nevada candidate says Reid urged him to quit, because "a Muslim cannot win this race"

Sbaih said he had sought the meeting in order to win Reid’s support — a key factor in Nevada, where Reid is the unquestioned power broker of Democratic politics. But Reid would not give it, Sbaih said, and cited Sbaih’s religion as one reason why.

“I did not feel that this was an issue. They made it an issue. My campaign is about me being an American,” Sbaih said. He said he had not faced this kind of opposition based on his religion before: “I just turned 40. Been in this country for 29 years. And it’s just absolutely shocking that this occurred.”

A spokeswoman for Reid confirmed that the meeting took place. However, she categorically denied that Reid had cited Sbaih’s religion as a reason he would not succeed.

“Senator Reid did not say that,” said Kristen Orthman, a spokeswoman in Reid’s Senate office. “Jesse Sbaih is a liar and that’s why he is going to lose.”