Posted by: sweeneyblog | February 25, 2011

Harry Reid LOVES Old School Politics

Harry Reid (D-NV) is a former boxer, anti-mafia crusader, terrible public speaker and an excellent old-school politico. What do I mean by “Old-School”? I mean, the man schemes, lays plots and carefully, subtlety carries them out.

Subtlety is under-appreciated in our modern age of politics. With the 24 hour news media ready to pounce on anything, then dropping it moments later, most political traps are big and obvious. For instance, let’s go film some Planned Parenthood employees and edit it to make them look bad. That screams deceptive trap at a distance of 12 miles. No, “Old School” is the art of making your opponent do something really stupid, and  you coming off smelling like roses.

Case in point: Harry Reid come out recently against prostitution. As you may know, prostitution is legal in some counties in Nevada. The only place in the United States where it is legal. The sex business is highly regulated, through licensed brothels, that require all the workers to get regular health check-ups and provide against abuses. In short, taking prostitution off the streets and back alleys and putting it in a safe environment. Even so, Harry Reid came out saying that it should be completely illegal. Odd, but not completely out of character for social conservative (he is Mormon after all) Harry Reid. But my question, when I saw that little news story, was why now?

My answer came back almost immediately, John Ensign (R-NV) the junior senator from Nevada came out defending prostitution. Why is this a big deal? Right now, John Ensign is

a) up for re-election in 2012 and struggling to raise money


b) the subject of a Senate inquiry about using $96,000 of campaign money to bribe the husband of the woman he had an affair with, who later threatened to expose the whole thing.

Now there is a fresh ring of news stories and commentary rolling out saying “Of course John Ensign is in support of paying for sex, no one else has paid more for it recently than him.” It brings up the whole scandal again without any blowback on Harry Reid. That is old school politics.



  1. […] jabs with levity or a bit of style (I highlighted Harry Reid’s old school politicking in an earlier post here). Pouring over my morning news, this caught my […]

  2. […] him, is not lacking in courage, but rather a “Game of Thrones”-style subtle player of old school politics. Sen. Harry Reid, crafty […]

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