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NEVADA GOP-PRIMARY ENDORSEMENTS
Nevada GOP chairman supports primary endorsements
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Nevada Republican Party Chairman Michael McDonald says he supports party endorsements of GOP candidates before the primary election.
McDonald has stayed on the sidelines as the state GOP debates the issue. But on the eve of the party's convention in Las Vegas, McDonald tells The Associated Press he supports the move, which is assured to spark spirited debate when delegates convene Saturday in Las Vegas.
McDonald says his stance has changed over the past year and he's concerned that consultants, with access to big campaign donors, are muscling influence at the expense of grassroots party faithful.
He says if candidates interview with labor groups and newspaper editorial boards for endorsements, they should explain their positions and seek the same nod from party loyalists.
Ripples of Nevada range showdown spreading in West
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Images of a forced cattle roundup on a rural Nevada range have sent ripples through the West, prompting elected officials in several states to weigh in, militia members to mobilize and federal land managers to reshape elements of the operation.
Bureau of Land Management officials dismantled designated protest areas as the fight over Cliven Bundy's cattle widened into a debate about states' rights and federal land-use policy.
Nevada state Assemblywoman Michele Fiore said Friday that people are standing up for important land rights.
The Republican from Las Vegas says she's horrified that BLM police used stun guns on one of Bundy's sons during a Wednesday confrontation on a state highway.
Several Republican lawmakers from Arizona say they plan to travel to the site to protest what they call government heavy-handedness.
Borgata casino lawsuit: Gambler cheated, won $9.6M
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — An Atlantic City casino is suing a big-time gambler, claiming he won $9.6 million in a card-cheating scheme in baccarat.
The Borgata filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday against Phillip Ivey Jr., considered one of the best poker players in the world.
The lawsuit alleges Ivey and an associate exploited a defect in cards made by a Kansas City manufacturer that enabled them to sort and arrange good cards and gave him an unfair advantage in baccarat.
The casino says the technique, called edge sorting, violates New Jersey casino gambling regulations.
Ivey's lawyer declined to comment Friday.
A lawsuit in Britain makes similar allegations. Ivey has denied any misconduct in that case.
NEVADA REPUBLICANS-GAY MARRIAGE
Nevada GOP mulls social issues' place in platform
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Nevada Republicans meeting in Las Vegas this weekend are deciding whether a definition of marriage and statements opposing abortion should stay in the state platform.
A platform committee is meeting Friday to discuss the contents of the document, while a vote is scheduled Saturday.
The Clark County Republican Party voted last month to remove platform language defining marriage as between a man and a woman. Political director Nick Phillips says the statement didn't fit with the party's beliefs about personal liberty.
State GOP finance chair Dan Schwartz says he expects the state party will follow suit and says Republicans should steer clear of social issues if they want to win elections.
Others, such as Republican Assemblyman Ira Hansen, say such a move would further alienate the socially conservative GOP base.
SHOE THROWER-HILLARY CLINTON
Woman accused of tossing shoe at Clinton released
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Authorities say a Phoenix woman accused of throwing a shoe at Hillary Rodham Clinton during a Las Vegas speech has been freed after being given a misdemeanor disorderly conduct summons.
Prosecutors said Friday that 36-year-old Alison Michelle Ernst was freed by Las Vegas police after being questioned by U.S. Secret Service agents in the Thursday incident at the Mandalay Bay resort.
As Ernst was taken into custody, she said she threw a shoe and dropped some papers. She didn't say why.
Ernst's jail booking photo shows she wore blonde wig at the time.
Ernst couldn't immediately be reached Friday. It wasn't clear if she had a lawyer.
Clinton wasn't struck by the shoe. She joked about the incident and continued with her talk to the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries.
Police: Facebook posts prompted fatal casino fight
RENO, Nev. (AP) — Reno, Nev., police say they've arrested a nightclub guard accused of killing a man who posted negative Facebook comments about the lounge's security.
Authorities say they arrested 24-year-old Stefen Johnson on suspicion of second-degree murder Thursday, four months after the man died.
Police say 23-year-old Victor Victoria-Acevedo had posted comments on Bubinga Lounge's Facebook page after people he knew had run-ins with security there. Authorities say he was blocked from entering the club in the Eldorado Hotel Casino Dec. 15 due to the comments, which led to a fight.
Authorities say Johnson used excessive force against Victoria-Acevedo, causing internal injuries that turned fatal.
No lawyer for Johnson was listed in jail or court records.
Police Sgt. Kenneth Harmon says the fight happened while the club hosted participants from Santa Crawl, a popular bar-hopping event in which revelers dress as Santa Claus.
Government extends public comment period on cuckoo
DENVER (AP) — The government shutdown has led the Fish and Wildlife Service to extend the public comment period on a proposal that yellow-billed cuckoos found in the West be listed as threatened.
Steve Segin, a spokesman for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, noted Friday that the opening of the original public comment period coincided with the government shutdown last fall. The deadline, originally in December, was this week extended to April 25.
The service proposes listing the bird as threatened in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Utah, Wyoming, Montana, Oregon, and Washington in the United States and in Canada and Mexico.
The Denver Post reported Friday that the bird's numbers dropped from the thousands across the West to only 500 breeding pairs today, with 10 pairs in Colorado.
NORTH LAS VEGAS-BUDGET
North Las Vegas strikes deals with last 2 unions
LAS VEGAS (AP) — North Las Vegas officials say all four of its public employee labor unions have reached tentative agreements with the city that are aimed at staving off a takeover by the state.
Mayor John Lee announced deals with two police unions Thursday, in addition to agreements with Teamsters and firefighters.
Gov. Brian Sandoval personally negotiated with unions on Wednesday, shortly before city managers were to present a tentative plan to deal with an $18 million shortfall.
North Las Vegas has been trying to stem its bleeding for several years. In January, a state judge ruled the city could not withhold $25 million in pay raises to public safety employees.
Last week city officials proposed a $7.7 million settlement with the unions, saying the alternative would be steeps cuts and layoffs.
Domenici to host campaign fundraiser for son
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Former U.S. Sen. Pete Domenici will host a political fundraiser next Thursday in Albuquerque for the son he secretly fathered out of wedlock in the 1970s.
The former Republican senator for New Mexico says the invitation-only fundraiser for Adam Laxalt's campaign for Nevada attorney general will be the first time he appears publicly with Laxalt in New Mexico.
Domenici revealed last year that he is the father of Laxalt, a Las Vegas lawyer.
The former senator told the Albuquerque Journal that his son asked him to host the fundraiser and that he's pleased to do it.
Nevada food exports hit record levels
RENO, Nev. (AP) — Nevada's food and agricultural exports reached a milestone last year, exceeding 2012 sales by more than $19 million.
The Nevada Department of Agriculture says export sales hit $137 million in 2013, an increase of 17 percent from the year before.
Food and agricultural products are Nevada's ninth largest export category. Products include cereals, flour and starches, grains, fruits and vegetables, trees, plants, and beverages and spirits.
Canada, China, Mexico and Japan were Nevada's top four markets for agricultural products last year.
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