Politics

Columnist: Vegas Paper’s Editor Killed Column Critical of ‘Friend’ Harry Reid

Harry Reid
Harry Reid / AP

The editor of the Las Vegas Sun killed a column criticizing inflammatory comments by Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.), a friend of the editor, according to the column’s author.

Nevada political reporter Jon Ralston, a former Sun reporter, filed a column in 2012 criticizing Reid’s baseless allegations that then-Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney had not paid income taxes in a decade.

"The column was never published because Las Vegas Sun Editor Brian Greenspun attempted to protect his friend, Reid, from the criticism," Ralston wrote on his website Wednesday.

Reid, who announced his retirement last week, suggested the truthfulness of his comments did not matter because Romney did not win. The remarks have garnered widespread criticism.

Ralston called Reid "fearless and shameless, a formidable combination for his adversaries, especially now that he has nothing to lose," in his 2012 column.

Folks, these are not the rantings of an idiot savant, but the actions of a man with two, contradictory sides. Reid can be the frothing attack dog willing to call a president a "liar" and a "loser" just as easily as he can be the consummate inside Club of 100 player able to stroke Republicans to cut deals across the aisle. But more to the point here, Reid is the very careless pol with the media, regularly making intemperate remarks that make his staff cringe, but he’s also the coolly calculating pol who always—always—has a method to his apparent madness.

Reid knows EXACTLY what he is doing on the Romney tax returns—trying to create so much pressure that the candidate has to release more of his tax records. Whether or not Reid really has an "extremely credible source" that told him Romney did not pay taxes for 10 years is not the point.

He does not care about being criticized for using the same tactics that Joe McCarthy used or, in the formulation of some overheating Republicans, that were employed at the Salem witch trials.

He doesn’t care that an avalanche of ridicule and obloquy is raining down on him for his outrageous statements—ones he continues to repeat almost daily.

And he doesn’t care that almost no one is joining him to repeat these blithe allegations-without-proof about the Republican presidential nominee.

Is there anything more dangerous than a man who does not care?