The Big Lie vs. A Bigger Liar
Typically, Nevada Republican Central Committee (NVGOP) meetings, where the elected GOP representatives from all 17 counties gather to do the business of the Nevada Republican Party, are fairly predictable. Sadly, the April 10th meeting in Carson City has left some people very angry, and inexplicably, a member has gone to the media with wild accusations that anyone present at the meeting knows for a fact are untrue.
This Big Lie continues to ripple through national media, bringing unwarranted attention to the NVGOP at a time when we need to concentrate on the 2022 election cycle. There is no evidence to support the allegations, and in fact the media was provided the proof to contradict what they reported on without researching, yet no retractions have been issued.
It’s amazing that the agendas of the media and others who have been falsely pushing the Big Lie will not allow them to admit the facts that have been presented, but the members of the NVGOP deserve to know the truth, and that’s the purpose of this communication. To understand the current smear campaign, we need to go back to the beginning.
The members of the NVGOP are elected every two years at the Nevada GOP State Convention. Under state law, all the members of the NVGOP are public elected officials representing their precinct and county at the state level. The initial NVGOP membership for the 2020-2022 time period was elected in compliance with Nevada Revised Statutes 293.150-293.157
from nominees presented by each county to the state convention in June 2020.
Based on the number of registered Republicans in Clark County, NVGOP bylaws authorize Clark County to have up to 185 representatives to serve a two-year term on the NVGOP. Clark County nominated 167 individuals
who were elected without any objection to serve for the following two years, until the 2022 state convention.
By only nominating 167 members, Clark County left 18 seats vacant in their delegation to the NVGOP. Nevada Revised Statute 293.157
authorizes the NVGOP to fill vacancies from a county’s delegation, based on nominations from the county, at any regular meeting of the NVGOP between state conventions.
The NVGOP meets 2-3 times per year to do the business of the Republican Party in Nevada. The meetings are generally very straight forward, and while they can be contentious at times, for the last ten years, they end on time with all the business completed, and issues resolved.
The first NVGOP meeting after the 2020 state convention was held in Virginia City, NV in October 2020. At that meeting, there was an attempt by Clark County leadership to arbitrarily terminate the NVGOP membership of dozens of Clark County NVGOP members
. This was done without cause as required under Nevada Revised Statute 293.157
, and apparently with no pressing need, as Clark County submitted no names of members to fill any vacancies, either from the state convention or the vacancies they were proposing to create.
Clark County had not had a county central committee meeting since the state convention, so the members they were attempting to remove had not been given the opportunity to defend their seats or to even know that leadership was recommending their removal. The full body of the NVGOP determined after debate that the recommendations to remove the members in question were without cause. The NVGOP therefore voted to take no action on the removal, but rather directed Clark County to hold a properly noticed meeting to resolve this issue and make recommendations at the next meeting of the NVGOP.
Clark County had their first meeting since the state convention in November 2020. They waited until just a couple of weeks before the April 2021 meeting to advise the state party of the results of that meeting. And, when they did so, rather than providing the list of new members elected to fill their vacancies, they provided a list of 98 purported current members, leaving it to the state party to figure out who needed to be added to their roster and who was already a member.
The evening before the spring meeting of the NVGOP in Carson City, state leadership was notified by email
that Clark County had retained counsel, claiming that the NVGOP was going to reject the membership list submitted to the state party secretary. This was a misunderstanding on the part of Clark County leadership, as the NVGOP never had any intention of rejecting any members but was in fact working hard to ensure that all duly elected members could be seated.
The state party had compared the list of duly elected members to the list that Clark County submitted. What we found was that after removing the names of those who were already duly elected members of the NVGOP and needed no further ratification, Clark County leadership was essentially asking the NVGOP to add 44 new members from their county to fill vacancies per NVGOP bylaws and NRS 293. Mostly these were people elected to their board or to fill vacancies in their delegation at their November meeting. That list of names submitted by Clark can be found here
Not only did the full NVGOP body vote to accept all the names that Clark County submitted for membership from their November election, the NVGOP worked for several days prior to the meeting to find room for them by identifying enough people who had died, moved away, changed their registration, or were otherwise ineligible to hold NVGOP membership to allow all 44 members that Clark County nominated for NVGOP membership to be ratified. Not 44 people that I wanted, or anybody else in state party leadership wanted, but 44 people that were properly nominated by their county for NVGOP membership per the bylaws and state law.
During the meeting the following day, the Central Committee recessed so that the attorneys for Clark County and the NVGOP could address Clark County’s misunderstanding and explained the process the NVGOP had followed to make sure that all of Clark’s nominated members could be seated. The lists of nominees were reviewed and agreed to by Chairman Sajdak and his counsel.
In the end, Chairman Sajdak conceded
that the state party had done exactly what needed to be done to ensure that all the duly elected members representing Clark County could be ratified, and the meeting continued after the full central committee voted overwhelmingly to seat all the proposed members. It is absolutely beyond comprehension as to why Chairman Sajdak would fabricate a story about an additional forty-two members being added when the members being added were added at his request.
Well after the April meeting had concluded, Mr. Sajdak suddenly began to slander the NVGOP and I with baseless and untrue accusations of recruiting NVGOP members who were also involved with an organization called the “Proud Boys.” Readers can review the list of names provided by Clark County and ratified by the NVGOP and determine for themselves if these individuals, including Mr. Sajdak’s wife, Clark County GOP board members, and 30 other members of the Clark County GOP are in fact “Proud Boys.”
For the record, neither of the individuals who are profiled in the misleading Review Journal article are now, nor ever have been, elected members of the State Central Committee. Here
are the names of all 183 duly elected members to the NVGOP from Clark County.
NVGOP meetings are open meetings. Any registered Republican can attend a meeting as a guest and observe the business of the party. Meetings are held all over the state so that the rural communities have an opportunity to host the full central committee.
Of course, it’s not always convenient for members to travel, so NVGOP bylaws allow members to designate another Republican from their county to attend and represent them by proxy. This encourages maximum participation for all duly elected members. Proxies may be carried by guests, or other members. Proxy holders need to meet the same qualifications as members – they must be a registered Republican and must be registered to vote in the county they represent.
It is simply not reasonable nor feasible to expect the Credentials Committee to conduct a full background check on every guest that is designated to carry a proxy vote. Guests are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and be respectful of the rules and bylaws of the NVGOP. Because the Nevada Republican Party is a “big tent” organization we reject discrimination in any form and invite any registered Republican to participate.
There was nothing to indicate that any guests that attended the April 10, meeting were members of any hate group. Every attendee, save one, were professional, respectful, and attentive throughout the meeting.
The resolution to censure Secretary of State Barbara Cegavske was brought from the floor by a member of the NVGOP, which is their right. The resolution was sensitive in nature, so the NVGOP voted to consider the resolution in Executive Session. No filming or recording is permitted during Executive Session. The resolution was given to the body, read, debated, amended, and ultimately passed as amended following Roberts Rules of Order. Every amendment required a separate vote. The debate over the censure was passionate on both sides and in the end, the vote was very close. Debate was open and extensive, and no organized group controlled the conversation or the vote. Members and proxy holders voted based on the debate and their conscience.
Following normal parliamentary procedure, the initial vote was a voice vote. Because that vote was close, a hand count was requested by the body and completed using several tellers. In compliance with NVGOP bylaws and Roberts Rules, there were no paper ballots and no recordings, so there is no way to physically audit this vote. However, all the members witnessed the process, and no objections were raised by any member. Those who are calling for an audit are well aware of this fact, meaning that their calls for an audit are apparently based on their personal agenda rather than any legitimate question about the vote.
It is disappointing that a member of the committee thought it necessary to share the original resolution with the media without mention of any amendments or the reasons behind them. It is bad enough that a document from executive session was made public in the first place, but to do so without providing complete information is particularly egregious.
Well over a month after the NVGOP state meeting, Mr. Sajdak suddenly brought forth inaccurate allegations that were published without any verification by the Las Vegas Review Journal. The Nevada Republican Senate Caucus inexplicably also decided to echo these allegations, in the middle of the night, again without doing any verification or reaching out to the state party for the actual facts.
Many members of the Senate Caucus are longstanding members of the NVGOP. They’re very familiar with how state central committee members are elected and how the credentialing process works. We’re puzzled by their involvement, although it’s worth noting that a Senate Caucus member is the only announced candidate for Chairman of Clark County, and that this individual is endorsed by Chairman Sajdak.
The NVGOP finds the timing of Chairman Sajdak’s allegations to be a convenient deflection, coming just after he was served with a lawsuit from a group of Clark County Republicans who want to join the Clark County Republican Party. The NVGOP was named in this suit also but has since been dismissed from it because the state party has no involvement in local county party elections.
It’s reported that hundreds of people have signed up to join the CCRP. This is reasonable considering the interest in politics that the 2020 election has created, as well as the fact that this is the first meeting since November 2020. Unfortunately, Clark County leadership is alleging foul play, and using this interest as an excuse to postpone meetings and to violate the agreement they made at the April 2021 NVGOP meeting to make sure all their duly elected members can continue to serve.
The accusations brought forth by Mr. Sajdak suggest that robust background checks are done on all applicants for central committee membership. That is simply untrue. No county party, nor the state party, has ever conducted extensive background checks on potential members. Members are elected by their neighbors at precinct meetings, and then advance through elections at their county and state conventions. Just as with any other publicly elected official, NVGOP members are vetted by their neighbors who vote for them. Again, the only legal requirements for membership are that the member is a registered Republican and resides in the county they represent.
The NVGOP expects all members, applicants, and guests to behave in a professional manner. If a member did not do so, they can be removed by the NVGOP membership for cause after a vote of the body. It is unacceptable to preemptively bar an individual for membership under the assumption of misbehavior – in America, people are innocent until proven guilty.
At no time have I nor the NVGOP supported any hate group. We reject racism and bigotry in all forms. We embrace all Republicans regardless of race, creed, color, sex, religion or nation of origin. We are inclusive, not exclusive and we welcome all Nevada Republicans that want to participate in a respectful and meaningful manner. Our members, including my spouse, are from varied ethnicities and backgrounds. We value the diversity that each of them brings to our organization and together we are stronger.
We have not allowed these lies to deter us from the mission of getting Republicans elected. In fact, I’ve been working closely with the former Chair of the Finance Committee, Jim Hindle, on his replacement since Jim was elected as NVGOP Vice Chairman. We’ve recently announced that Don Ahern will replace Jim as Finance Chairman, and his committee includes prominent Republican business owners and other influential Nevadans that will build on the committee’s unprecedented recent successes and take NVGOP fundraising to the next level.
The NVGOP is laser focused on the 2022 elections. We are recruiting, training, grooming, and assisting people that want to run for office now and in the future. Nevada Republicans can achieve success, together.
I apologize that any of this needed to be said, but the bizarre and obviously untrue allegations of 42 “Proud Boys” being improperly seated to influence a vote was very serious. The media has wholly ignored the proof provided to them about the Big Lie, but we felt that our members deserved a full and complete set of facts. Chairman Sajdak and others continued slander is unacceptable and will not be tolerated.
The NVGOP believes that it is only right that the leadership of Clark County retract their untrue statements. Further, we hope that they will not continue down the path of turning away potential members that can help Clark County and the NVGOP win in 2022. They should allow all interested and qualified individuals, under their current rules and bylaws, to participate. We urge the Clark GOP to hold their repeatedly postponed membership meeting as soon as possible so that all Republicans can be involved in our party, and together we can move the Republican Party in Nevada forward.
Please feel free to reach out to me anytime if I can provide any further information.
Let’s Make Nevada Red Again!