Reid, powerful union come to Clinton’s aid

Reid, powerful union come to Clinton’s aid
© Cameron Lancaster

Harry ReidHarry ReidLawmakers eye early exit from Washington McCain to support waiver for Mattis, Trump team says Reeling Dems look for new leader MORE and the powerful Culinary Workers Union were huge players in Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonDemocrats miss warning signs, even in blue Maryland Robert Gates doesn't expect job in Trump administration Dean drops out of DNC chairmanship race MORE’s victory Saturday in Nevada’s caucuses.

Clinton racked up big wins in caucuses held in six major casinos on the Las Vegas strip, which helped her roll out a big majority in Clark County, home to about three-quarters of the state's registered Democratic voters.

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Reid, the Senate minority leader and longtime Nevada Democratic political pro, encouraged the head of the Culinary Workers Union to get casino workers to turn up at the caucuses, according to The New York Times

“He’s been extremely cooperative,” Reid told the Times about union head D. Taylor. “Probably 100 organizers will be at the caucus sites and in hotels to make sure people know what they’re doing.”

While Reid is officially neutral in the race, veteran Nevada political journalist Jon Ralston said it was clear he wanted Clinton to win and was worried that Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersDemocrats offer double-talk on Veterans Affairs Dean drops out of DNC chairmanship race Sanders vs. Trump: The battle of the bully pulpit MORE (I-Vt.) might pull off an upset.

“Harry Reid asserted again today ... that he really can change the dynamic of an election in this state,” Ralston said on MSNBC shortly after Clinton’s victory speech.

Reports out of many casinos noted long lines of workers heading to caucus inside casinos. Workers at the MGM Casino received three hours of paid time off to caucus without fear of having to skip work, but employees at some other casinos were faced with the prospect of having to head back to work without participating. 

The Culinary Workers Union did not endorse either candidate, but Clinton has locked up substantially more support from unions than Sanders. 

In her victory speech, she specifically thanked “hotel and casino workers who never wavered.”

Clinton spent the latter part of the week on the Las Vegas strip going from casino to casino and spending time with hotel workers. She even showed up to meet with employees during their late-night shift. 

Clinton also never gave up on rural parts of the state. She doubled back to Elko, Nev., canceling a trip to Florida.