In Harry Reid We Trust


The Nevada senator was raised in poverty, worked his way through law school, spent his professional life as a public servant and is currently earning $193,400 a year. Now Senator Reid is worth millions.

In 1974, Harry Reid told the Las Vegas Review-Journal (LVRJ), “Any man or woman who will not be completely candid about his or her finances does not deserve to be in public office.”

Reid entered the Nevada legislature in 1982 and at the time, according to the LVRJ his net worth was listed as between $1 million and $1.5 million. Today, Reid’s net worth is somewhere between 3 and 10 million dollars.

So how did he get that way?

It begins in 1982, with a worthless 160-acres Reid and long time friend and Las Vegas lubricants distributor, Clair Haycock purchased near Bullhead City, Arizona. Though deemed a money pit, the pair held on to it until Haycock transferred the property to Reid.

We’ll return to this in a bit.

In another land deal Reid made $700,000 in 2004. It started in 1998 when he bought a parcel of land with attorney Jay Brown, a close friend whose name has surfaced multiple times in organized-crime investigations.

Brown was formerly the Corporate Agent for Rick Rizzolo. He represented Rizzolo’s “Crazy Horse Too” in actions before the Las Vegas City Council.

In 2005, Reid appointee and Federal Judge Kent Dawson’s brother, attorney John Dawson, hid Rick and Lisa Rizzolo’s assets. John Dawson’s law firm Lionel Sawyer & Collins received $1.4 million dollars in legal fees for “asset protection” services.

Incidentally, Reid’s two sons are also attorneys with Lionel Sawyer & Collins.

At the same time, attorney Dawson was hiding Rizzolo’s assets; Judge Dawson was presiding over the trials of 15 former Rizzolo employees. Eventually, all received probation or reduced sentences

The Judge failed to disclose his brother’s financial relationship with Rizzolo during his “Crazy Horse 15” trials, nor did he disclose that he was appointed to the bench by Reid, who has close ties to Jay Brown, one of Rizzolo’s attorneys and a business partner of retired Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman who represented Rick Rizzolo in a 1989 attempted murder case.

There’s no evidence that Reid ever profited from these legal proceedings. They do however show the kind of company the Nevada Senator keeps.
Returning to the 2004 land deal, Reid transferred his portion of the property to Patrick Lane LLC, a holding company Brown controlled. And though he transferred it, Reid kept putting the property on his financial disclosures, and when the company sold it in 2004, he profited from land he didn’t own but which nearly tripled in value in six years.

Following this, in December 2005, Reid invested between $50,000 and $100,000 in the Dow Jones U.S. Energy Sector Fund (IYE), which closed that day at $29.15. The companies holding at the time included such oil giants as ExxonMobil, ChevronTexaco, and ConocoPhillips.

When he made a partial sale of his shares in August 2008, IYE closed at $41.82. A month later, Reid introduced a bill the Joint Committee on Taxation said would cost oil companies billions of dollars in taxes and regulatory fees.

The bill passed a few days later, and by October, IYE’s shares had fallen to $24.41.

But by this time, Reid had already cashed in.

Then in November 2006, when Reid became Senate majority leader, pushed through an $18 million earmark to build a bridge across the Colorado River between Laughlin and Bullhead City. Incidentally, this is nearby the 160-acres he purchased in 1982 with Haycock.

The land was sold to Reid by Hancock for a mere $10-thousand, far below the market value. Adding to this, six months later Reid introduced a soon-to-fail piece of legislation to protect lubricants dealers who had their supplies disrupted by the decisions of big oil companies.

As of 2010, this piece of worthless property listed somewhere between $1 million and $5 million.

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