(Chuck Muth) – Greetings from B-E-A-utiful Glenwood Springs, Colorado, where I learned last night, much to my surprise, the infamous Doc Holliday is buried.
“I’m your huckleberry.”
Jenna and I decided to take another Daddy-Daughter road trip adventure. We’re on our way to Denver to attend the big Western Conservative Conference this weekend.
Then we’ll take off wherever the road takes us as we make our way to Adam Laxalt’s annual Basque Fry at the Corley Ranch in Gardnerville the following Saturday where Republican presidential candidate Ron DeSantis – “America’s Governor” – will be the keynote speaker.
If me going to Adam’s event surprises you in light of our less-than-cordial relationship during his GOP primary last year vs. Sam Brown, you must be unfamiliar with one of the Immutable Laws of Politics: No permanent friends; no permanent enemies.
This is already better than the cross-country road trip we took together two years ago for three reasons:
1.) We’re driving in my new (used) 2006 Lincoln Town car instead of the monster motor home.
With the RV, the drive everywhere took longer, ate up gas like a Pac Man monster on steroids, and felt like riding in a cargo plane with no seats. With the Lincoln, we made great time, saved on gas and it was like riding on a cloud.
2.) Jenna can share the driving, which she couldn’t do last time because she wasn’t ready yet to drive a 37-foot house-on-wheels. This allowed me to sit in the passenger seat on my phone and “get sh*t done.”
3.) She’s 21 now, which means she can go into bars with me, which is where you really get to know the soul of a city or town.
In fact, here’s a pic of us at the Doc Holliday Saloon last night where we met a guy from Cleveland vacationing with his family and a 29-year veteran high school chemistry teacher – and no, he isn’t “Breaking Bad.” Great guys.
But onto the main event; a first-blush list of the winners and losers of the 2023 session of the Nevada Legislature…
Biggest Winner: Valeria Gurr
I only recall meeting Valeria once, a couple weeks ago, and all we really got to say to each other was “hello.” But I feel I know her because she wears her oversized heart on her sleeve through social media posts in support of school choice for low-income, minority children.
This woman should be canonized.
Saint Valeria is a force of nature. The passion she exudes for rescuing children trapped in public school failure factories is palpable. You could power a small city with the energy she generates.
And there was no bigger champion of expanding Opportunity Scholarships in this legislative session.
Alas, cutting funding for Opportunity Scholarships, rather than expanding it, turned out to be the Democrats’ “hill to die for” in this session. They are wholly-owned subsidiaries of the teachers’ unions, and when they hear their master’s voice, they comply.
Their war cry this session was: “Screw the Kids!”
For Democrats, school choice MUST be limited to wealthy white families. And here’s why…
If minority children get a good education and learn to think for themselves – rather than be indoctrinated in liberal, left-wing ideology – they’re gonna grow up and vote Republican. It’s as simple as that.
Democrats thrive on ignorance.
Anyway, when it finally became painfully clear that no matter what concessions Gov. Joe Lombardo offered these racist Democrats, who completely controlled the legislative process this session, that they were gonna screw little dark-skinned children, Saint Valeria was crushed.
But her spirit wasn’t broken. She understands that sometimes you lose a battle but that doesn’t mean you’ve lost the war. Here’s what she tweeted Tuesday night after Democrats killed Opportunity Scholarship expansion for this session…
“After waiting months to move the legislation, @nvdems cut out all opportunity scholarships from AB 400 in a last-minute amendment. Democrats ignored the @JosephMLombardo school choice agenda. They’re ignoring the voices of hundreds of thousands of Nevadans – and that’s unacceptable. Fight continues.”
As Mark Twain famously put it, “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight; it’s the size of the fight in the dog.”
Anyone betting against Saint Valeria eventually winning this fight on behalf of Nevada’s children is taking a sucker’s bet.
If you’re a legislator in a “swing” district who voted to crush the futures of Nevada kids by cutting the funding for the Opportunity Scholarships this session, you might wanna take a selfie right now of you and your golden locks.
‘Cause she’s gonna scalp you at the ballot box next year!
You know, a lot of people would kill to have lunch with a president, a governor, a senator or a Hollywood celebrity. Not me. When I get back, I would LOVE to buy lunch for Saint Valeria.
She’s been largely an Unsung Hero to most Nevadans…until now.
Go Valeria, go!
Biggest Loser: Sen. Scott Hammond
The biggest surprise of the 2023 Legislature was the courageous last stand by Senate Republicans at the last minute of the last day of the session when they stuck together, voted as a bloc and killed the Capital Improvement Projects (CIP) budget bill – which required a 2/3 super-majority vote for passage that the Democrats didn’t have.
All that Republicans asked for was that public charter school teachers teaching in public charter schools get the same pay and funding that Nevada’s failure factories receive.
But charter schools, even though they’re public schools, give some families just a tiny bit of school choice.
A tiny bit the teachers’ unions are hellbent on snuffing out. So naturally, the Democrats followed their marching orders and said, “HELL, NO!”
That forced the Legislature into a special session the next day.
All Senate Republicans had to do was stick together – like Davy Crockett, Sam Houston and the courageous defenders at the Alamo – and they would have gotten what they asked for.
Then, the very next day, “Republican” State Sen. Scott Hammond channeled his inner-Judas and did his best imitation of Benedict Arnold by flip-flopping and selling out his GOP Senate colleagues by giving the Democrats the one vote they needed to pass the CIP bill.
Thus earning him the 2023 “John Marvel Award.”
“This had to be done,” he told reporters after the back-stabbing sell-out. “We needed to end this. … I support what’s in the CIP, and that’s what happened.”
And as a reminder, Hammond also voted for the largest tax hike in state history in 2015, so this unfortunately isn’t exactly a shocker even though it’s a major disappointment.
He’s also termed out of office, so he just didn’t give a sh*t rather than get sh*t done. He wanted to go home more than he wanted to fight for school choice.
Still not sure what he got in return, in addition to his thirty pieces of silver, but I hope this drives a stake through the heart of any chance he ends up being the next State Superintendent of Public Schools.
He should be hung in effigy instead.
OK, gotta run. I hear Doc Holliday calling Jenna and I from the grave, so we have to check out of the hotel. More winners and losers coming up over the next couple of days.
Peace and love, everybody. Peace and love. And…
Go Knights, go!
FAMOUS LAST WORDS
“Governor @JosephMLombardo has many advocates in government, but these advocates are members of a legislative minority who didn’t have the power to push his priorities over a partisan brick wall. School choice for NV isn’t a reality with a Dem majority.” – Megan Barth of the Nevada Globe
“The Nevada Legislature completed a special session in less than the four hours, approving Assembly Bill 1 to finish the state budget Tuesday night. One Republican – Scott Hammond – joined Democrats in backing the bill in the Senate, and three Republicans supported the bill in the Assembly – P.K. O’Neill, Danielle Gallant and Rich DeLong.” – Greg Haas/Tiffany Justice, 6/6/23
Mr. Muth is president of Citizen Outreach, publisher of Nevada News & Views, and founder of CampaignDoctor.com. You can sign up for his conservative, Nevada-focused e-newsletter at MuthsTruths.com. His views are his own.