Harry Reid on caucus confusion: 'Iowa has forfeited its chance to be number one'

Harry Reid on caucus confusion: 'Iowa has forfeited its chance to be number one'

Former Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidReid pushes back on Sanders suggestion that a Democrat with plurality of delegates should be the nominee Harry Reid on 'Medicare for All': 'Not a chance in hell it would pass' The Hill's Morning Report - Sanders on the rise as Nevada debate looms MORE (D-Nev.) said Nevada should replace Iowa as the nation’s first caucuses after Iowa’s “debacle” last week, in an exclusive interview with Vice.

“Iowa has forfeited its chance to be number one. I don't think that'll happen anymore,” Reid told the publication. 

He also noted the lack of a diverse electorate in both Iowa and New Hampshire, where Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersPoll: Bloomberg stalls after Vegas debate Prominent Texas Latina endorses Warren Bloomberg campaign: Vandalism at Tennessee office 'echoes language from the Sanders campaign and its supporters' MORE (I-Vt.) won the first-in-the-nation primary Tuesday evening.

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“Since the debacle in Iowa, [pundits] have been talking about, Nevada should be the first state. Why? Because we’re a state that’s heavily diverse,” Reid added. “It’s really a state that represents what the country is all about. So I think that Iowa really was an embarrassment to everybody.”

Nevada’s caucuses on Feb. 22 are the next contest for the winnowing Democratic field.

Reid, who still wields considerable political influence in the state, told Vice he had recently spoken on the phone with Sens. Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharPoll: Bloomberg stalls after Vegas debate Washington Post fact-checker gives Bloomberg 4 Pinocchios for 'deceptive editing' in campaign ad The Hill's 12:30 Report: Dem anxiety grows ahead of Super Tuesday MORE (D-Minn.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenPoll: Bloomberg stalls after Vegas debate Bloomberg unveils billboards to troll Trump ahead of campaign stops John Legend joining Warren in South Carolina next week: report MORE (D-Mass.), as well as former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegPoll: Bloomberg stalls after Vegas debate Bloomberg campaign: Vandalism at Tennessee office 'echoes language from the Sanders campaign and its supporters' Buttigieg to join striking South Carolina McDonald's workers next week MORE, and that while he had not spoken with Sanders in “several weeks,” he regularly spoke to Sanders’s campaign manager, Faiz Shakir, who previously served as a senior adviser to Reid.

Reid told the publication he has made up his mind on who he will cast his vote for but said he would vote early to avoid anyone knowing his choice.

Reid also addressed the candidacy of former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg, who will not compete in the Nevada caucuses but has advanced in the polls amid a barrage of TV advertising.

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“You have to recognize, the man — he really was a good mayor of a huge, huge city, the largest city in America. I like him, I’ve always liked him. Nobody’s done more on guns and climate than he has. No one.”

However, Reid, who in 2012 falsely claimed to have information indicating then-Republican presidential nominee Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyProgressives hope Nevada offers roadmap for pro-union 2020 victory Texas woman sentenced for illegal voting faces deportation after parole Trump campaign buys top advertising spot on YouTube for Election Day MORE had paid no taxes for years, said Bloomberg must release his tax returns as soon as possible.

“I believe going back to Eisenhower and Truman, they showed us their taxes, and the only one that hasn't is Trump. So I think tax returns are something that's part of the ballgame,” Reid told Vice. “Any presidential wannabe should do it.”