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AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

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  • AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

    Reid hung up the phone when questioned about the deal during an AP interview last week.

    Hell hath no fury like the press scorned, I guess.

  • #2
    Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

    The video with background info.

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    • #3
      Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

      Well, it's not quite explicit emails, but the GOP will take what they can get.
      ~~ Veritas simplex oratio est ~~
      No matter how far a wizard goes, he will always come back for his hat. --T. Pratchett

      <---- You know you're getting old when you rely on your forum meta-data to remind you how old you are.

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      • #4
        Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

        What explicit emails? The IMs were explicit but later turned out to be not exactly what they were presented as. The emails apparently requested a picture.

        The story has changed several times and it seems to me that no-one really cares about the details. What's important is that a republican Rep is gay and was overly friendly with subordinates. Apparently this is only ok for Democrats or something?

        One's interest in that story is irrelevant to Sen. Reid's little pickle, isn't it? If Foley did something illegal, he should go to jail. If Reid did something illegal he should too. If he violated Senate ethics rules, he should be investigated and if guilty booted. Right?

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        • #5
          Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

          I'm confused. The reporter keeps saying that he sold land he "hadn't owned for 3 years." But then he goes on to say that he transferred the land to an LLC in exchange for a share of that LLC - a single person company with only one asset - the land in question. Then the LLC sold the land and Reid took the profit. What exactly is wrong with this? Isn't that a common practice in real estate?
          In game handle: Steel Scion
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          • #6
            Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

            I think the deal itself is fine, maybe. The problem is that he didn't report it to the Senate, as required by ethics rules. Neither the sale in '01 nor the profit last year.

            It's probably like the Bill Frist HealthSouth stock - a little fishy, not enough there there to do much about. Not the greatest bullet point on the resume though.

            What is almost certain is the degree to which this will be ignored.

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            • #7
              Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

              Originally posted by Steeler View Post
              I'm confused. The reporter keeps saying that he sold land he "hadn't owned for 3 years." But then he goes on to say that he transferred the land to an LLC in exchange for a share of that LLC - a single person company with only one asset - the land in question. Then the LLC sold the land and Reid took the profit. What exactly is wrong with this? Isn't that a common practice in real estate?
              Yes, its a common practice. Its done all the time because...wait for it...it makes it easier to hide the details from the government (plus anyone who might want to sue you).

              In the abstract, theres nothing wrong with that. Then you stop and realize that Reid was PART of the government he was hiding activities from, refusing to report his activities to the Ethics committee, AND was involved in passing or influencing government legislation that directly increased the value of his own investment. Illegal? Maybe not. Unethical? Highly.

              Newsworthy? Well, as Leejo said, theres a high likelihood this will be almost completely ignored. Because after all, aren't pedophiles in positions of power much more interesting than theives in positions of power? Its not like the theives are going to change legislation for their own private benefit, right?

              (Disclaimer: Theif is not a perfectly accurate word. At the moment, I can't quite think of what WOULD be the most correct word, feel free to tell me if you think of one. Intended meaning would be a person who abuses power to gain wealth, without necessarily breaking the law in the process.)

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              • #8
                Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

                Originally posted by Kerostasis View Post
                Intended meaning would be a person who abuses power to gain wealth, without necessarily breaking the law in the process.
                I think the word you're looking for is "politician."

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                • #9
                  Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

                  Originally posted by Kerostasis View Post
                  [Reid] was involved in passing or influencing government legislation that directly increased the value of his own investment.
                  Where does the article say that? There's a bit about some funny land swap deals in the mid-90s tossed into the center of the article that don't seem to have much bearing on the LLC issue, but nothing about increasing the value of this particular property.

                  There's this passage about re-zoning:
                  Brown persisted. The Clark County zoning board followed by the Clark County Commission voted to overrule the recommendation and approve commercial zoning. Such votes were common at the time.

                  Before the approval in September 2001, Brown's consultant told commissioners that Reid was involved. "Mr. Brown's partner is Harry Reid, so I think we have people in this community who you can trust to go forward and put a quality project before you," the consultant testified.

                  With the rezoning granted, Patrick Lane pursued the shopping center deal. On Jan. 20, 2004, the company sold the property to developers for $1.6 million. Today, a multimillion dollar retail complex sits on the land.
                  ...but that doesn't seem to have involved Reid beyond some name-dropping. If you've ever been through a zoning fight, that kind of "trust me I'm good for your community" jazz is standard procedure (when we were building our production studio, we had to convince the board that we wouldn't be making porn). If they voted on it, then it's pretty much legit.

                  If there's some issue with the LLC, well, it's been forwarded to the ethics committee. Since that's a bunch of Republicans atm, I'm sure he'll get a fair hearing.

                  ---

                  Did a bit more reading - Solomon is the same AP reporter who falsely claimed that Reid took free boxing tickets in exchange for legislative action. Failing to mention that A) Reid is prohibited by Nevada law from paying for complimentary tickets (to avoid bribery allegations those tickets are set aside for legislators anyway), and B) he voted against the interests of the group that gave him the tickets.
                  In game handle: Steel Scion
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                  • #10
                    Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

                    Originally posted by Steeler View Post
                    Did a bit more reading - Solomon is the same AP reporter who falsely claimed that Reid took free boxing tickets in exchange for legislative action. Failing to mention that A) Reid is prohibited by Nevada law from paying for complimentary tickets (to avoid bribery allegations those tickets are set aside for legislators anyway), and B) he voted against the interests of the group that gave him the tickets.
                    If Solomon has an axe to grind with Reid, or is a NV reporter who's schtick is exposing corruption in politics, that doesn't make Reid clean as a whistle, does it?

                    It does inform the reader as to Solomon's propensity to be selective in how he presents the information, perhaps giving a less-than-complete presentation. It'll be interesting to see if some rule prevented Sen. Reid from disclosing this property's sale and his $1M profits to the ethics committee. I doubt it.

                    FWIW Sen McCain also received those free tickets but chose to send the guy the cash, thereby making it his problem to solve, not Sen McCain's. A pretty good approach, if you ask me.

                    Info here

                    Two senators who joined Reid for fights with the complimentary tickets took markedly differently steps.

                    Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) insisted on paying $1,400 for the tickets he shared with Reid for a 2004 championship fight. Sen. John Ensign (R-Nev.) accepted free tickets to another fight with Reid but already had recused himself from Reid's federal boxing legislation because his father was an executive for a Las Vegas hotel that hosts fights.
                    In this situation, Reid found a way to excuse his accepting these free tickets AND vote on the issue while his republican counterparts found a way to remove all doubt of undue influence. I like their approach better.

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                    • #11
                      Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

                      So nobody did anything wrong, but you like the way in which person A didn't do anything wrong better than the way person B didn't do anything wrong. Err... ok.

                      This time of year is great for fishing, isn't it?
                      In game handle: Steel Scion
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                      • #12
                        Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

                        Don't be silly. Reid did do something wrong, it just was technically not illegal, even though it may have been a violation of senate ethics rules. From the Article:

                        "Senators and Senate staff should be wary of accepting any gift where it appears that the gift is motivated by a desire to reward, influence, or elicit favorable official action," the Senate ethics manual states. It cites the 1990s example of an Oregon lawmaker who took gifts for personal use from a South Carolina state university and its president while that school was trying to influence his official actions.
                        The manual doesn't say Senators may accept such gifts provided they vote in a manner that demonstrates that the gift didn't buy their vote, it says don't accept the gift.

                        But we're talking about Sen. Reid's failure to disclose to the Senate these two transactions that netted him a cool $ million.

                        If he did something wrong, he should get spanked. If not, he shouldn't. In any case, your reaction is interesting.

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                        • #13
                          Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

                          Ok, the tickets thing: the state of Nevada specifically sets aside comp tickets for legislators and other VIPs so that the various gaming agencies cannot give them tickets as bribes. Either the VIPs use them or they don't - they still have access to them. So regardless of McCain's gesture of writing a check (which by law cannot be cashed) for them, there is no issue here.

                          Originally posted by leejo View Post
                          But we're talking about Sen. Reid's failure to disclose to the Senate these two transactions that netted him a cool $ million.
                          Um, he DID disclose the land sale. What he didn't disclose was the change of hands to the LLC, which is a procedural issue. Did you read the article?

                          And for the record, I'd like to see all politicians who commit crimes or ethical violations pay a price for their sins. But first you need a crime or a violation. This sounds like election time fishing. Your reaction is also interesting.
                          In game handle: Steel Scion
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                          • #14
                            Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

                            Originally posted by Steeler View Post
                            Um, he DID disclose the land sale. What he didn't disclose was the change of hands to the LLC, which is a procedural issue. Did you read the article?
                            Did he? Oops. How about the deal that netted him $1 million? Maybe Reid can say "I forgot."

                            Originally posted by Steve Martin
                            You.. can be a millionaire.. and never pay taxes! You can be a millionaire.. and never pay taxes! You say.. "Steve.. how can I be a millionaire.. and never pay taxes?" First.. get a million dollars. Now.. you say, "Steve.. what do I say to the tax man when he comes to my door and says, 'You.. have never paid taxes'?" Two simple words. Two simple words in the English language: "I forgot!" How many times do we let ourselves get into terrible situations because we don't say "I forgot"? Let's say you're on trial for armed robbery. You say to the judge, "I forgot armed robbery was illegal." Let's suppose he says back to you, "You have committed a foul crime. you have stolen hundreds and thousands of dollars from people at random, and you say, 'I forgot'?" Two simple words: Excuuuuuse me!!"
                            And for the record, I'd like to see all politicians who commit crimes or ethical violations pay a price for their sins. But first you need a crime or a violation.
                            Would you? Where, I wonder, is the Democrat's outrage and DEMAND that William Jefferson be expelled from office, having been caught with the money in his freezer? Would you support Bill Cinton being excoriated for his sameful act of sodomy with a sobordinate page/intern in the Oval Office? Or his subsequent lies to the American people? Or his perjury? How about Sen. Kennedy's vehicular manslaughter? Or Rep. Murtha's ABSCAM cutesies? Or Baney Frank's brothel? Shall I go on?

                            There is a double-standard in place with which we are all familiar. Reid will skate, because he's your crook.

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                            • #15
                              Re: AP Exclusive: Reid Got $1M in Land Sale

                              Originally posted by leejo View Post
                              Would you? Where, I wonder, is the Democrat's outrage and DEMAND that William Jefferson be expelled from office, having been caught with the money in his freezer? Would you support Bill Cinton being excoriated for his sameful act of sodomy with a sobordinate page/intern in the Oval Office? Or his subsequent lies to the American people? Or his perjury? How about Sen. Kennedy's vehicular manslaughter? Or Rep. Murtha's ABSCAM cutesies? Or Baney Frank's brothel? Shall I go on?

                              There is a double-standard in place with which we are all familiar. Reid will skate, because he's your crook.
                              I'm not a Democrat. He's not my crook. You haven't even proven that he is a crook. Don't heap the sins of the people you loathe upon me just because I doubt the conclusions of this particular article. I'm no more responsible for the (in)action of the Democrats than you are for the poor literacy rate in Arkansas. I haven't seen you deplore that sad state of affairs recently, so should I just assume that you endorse it? Of course not.

                              We weren't discussing Jefferson or Kennedy or Clinton. If you want my opinions on these things, then ask me. Just because you haven't heard my thoughts on those issues doesn't mean I don't have them.
                              In game handle: Steel Scion
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