Adam Laxalt is the Attorney General of Nevada. He is also running for Governor on the Republican ticket. As someone aiming for that position, you would think he would support online gambling, as gambling is the bedrock of Nevada’s economy, but oddly enough, that’s not the case. Seems like it’s possible that Laxalt doesn’t have the best interest of Nevada residents in mind? Apparently, some of his relatives don’t think so either, as they recently spoke out against him at a fundraiser for his opponent. Yeah.
The fundraiser for Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Steve Sisolak was hosted by Laxalt’s cousins, Kristin, and Monique Laxalt. According to CNN, Monique said at the event that just because they share name doesn’t mean they support him, it doesn’t mean that he represents the values of the rest of the family. She said she felt an obligation to speak out.
We won’t dive into his overall campaign platform, but it is telling that he is anti-online poker and even more telling that he was one of a few Attorneys General to sign a letter supporting Sheldon Adelson’s Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA).
In 2015, he went on “Ralston Live” in Nevada and explained his position on the matter to host Jon Ralston:
There’s a couple giant exceptions to this, alright? One is Congress spoke on this issue and had an existing Wire Act, ok? And then Attorney General Holder issued an opinion a few days before Christmas some years ago and changed that landscape. He changed that landscape without gaming companies, without law enforcement, without all the parties that should’ve been involved to make sure that we can keep consumers safe and all this can be done properly. So, I think obviously in this case we’re looking to return it back to what the status quo was, that Congress passed, and, you know, the other thing is obviously gaming is a different animal. You need to know where the sources of money are coming from and you need to make sure you can police this area.
Like other politicians, it is possible that Adam Laxalt’s opposition to online poker has more to do with wanting to be in the good graces of Adelson than truly being against internet gambling. Not only has Adelson backed Republican political candidates – including Donald Trump – with millions upon millions of dollars, but his company and the anti-online gambling organization he formed (Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling) have both paid for the services of lobbying firm j3 Strategies. Laxalt’s sister, Tessa Laxalt, works for that firm. Prior to her hire, j3 Strategies coordinated Laxalt’s 2014 Attorney General campaign.
At the fundraiser, while she didn’t specifically explain what Adam’s positions are and how they contrast to hers (though it’s likely the Republican/Democrat divide), Monique threw some high heat.
“We believe that he came from Washington to Nevada for the sole purpose of using the family name to pursue a political career which would allow him to eventually return to Washington as one of Washington’s most elite,” she said. “We do not believe he came to Nevada based on any true connection to or interest in this state. Four years ago with Washington money, he proceeded to capitalize on our family name to get elected as attorney general of this state.”
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