DACA Under Siege by Trump and AG Jeff Sessions

Last week, Trump pardoned Arizona’s Sheriff Joe Arpaio, a notorious national symbol of racism who refused court orders to stop his racial profiling in his zealous multi-year campaign of persecution against Latino communities. Now, one week later, Trump is throwing MORE red meat to his anti-immigrant and white supremacist supporters by going after immigrant kids, once again undermining American values in order to feed the bigotry of his extreme base. 

This morning, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced to the world that we, as a nation, can no longer be trusted to keep its word, that our word is no longer our bond. You see, in a stunning act of cruelty even for Trump, he had Attorney General Jeff Sessions announce termination of key parts of President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program effective six months from now, upending the lives of 800,000+ young people. That 

DACA recipients – often referred to as DREAMers — were brought to the US as children and for many of them this is the only country they’ve ever really known. Under the DACA program, they registered with the government and passed background checks in exchange for being able to work, pay taxes, and feel secure in their homes without the fear of deportation.

Many on the anti-immigrant Right who have been fighting against DACA since Day One have focused their criticism on the way in which it was done – with an executive order by President Obama. They have claimed that the real problem was just that Congress didn’t pass the law – so now it’s up to Congress to call their bluff and pass the DREAM Act.

Congress needs to act now to protect our investment in their education and assimilation before Trump releases his hordes of ICE thugs to begin deportation of DREAMers as their 2-yr authorizations come up for  renewals. And we even have a head start, because the bill already has bipartisan support!

Congress can undo this outrage by passing the DREAM Act of 2017, which would provide a path to citizenship for DACA recipients and other young undocumented immigrants who graduate from US high schools and attend college, enter the workforce, or enlist in a military program.

In the Senate, the DREAM Act is sponsored by Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Jeff Flake (R-AZ), and Chuck Schumer (D-NY) … we need to demand that the Senate make this bipartisan bill a priority, to get relief to the DREAMers who need it.

Petition:  << Tell Congress to PASS the DREAM Act of 2017 without delay! >>

Or, better yet, take a moment from your day and call or write your members of Congress and ask them to expedite bringing the Dream Act of 2017 [ House bill#:  H.R.3440 / Senate bill#: S.1615 ] to the floor for a vote AND to vote for its passage:

Trump Set to Deport Dreamers to Appease His Supremacist Base

A Note from Senator Catherine Cortez Masto —

Last month, we celebrated the fifth anniversary of President Obama’s landmark Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. This program granted hundreds of thousands of young people the opportunity to come out of the shadows and pursue the American Dream.

Dreamers are our soldiers, engineers, teachers and the future of this great nation. They embody everything we stand for as a country. But right now, DACA is under grave threat, and Dreamers are anxious about their future. Anti-immigrant attorneys general are threatening to sue the Trump administration if he doesn’t end DACA – and recent reports suggest Trump is finally about to follow through with his disgraceful campaign pledge to end the program. Now, more than ever, we need to stand up and defend these inspiring young men and women!

More than 12,000 DACA recipients call Nevada home, and I have been fortunate enough to spend time with many of them. They are fighters. They never give up. These young people were brought to our country as children, and for many of them, America is the only place they’ve ever called home. But now, they face constant uncertainty about their futures. This is wrong. We should be helping them live up to their full potential.

Not only is rescinding this program un-American, it is economically unsound. Deporting nearly 800,000 DACA beneficiaries would cost our economy at least $433 billion over the next 10 years. That’s not an economic policy we should embrace.

Welcoming immigrants is an American tradition. We should not be tearing families apart and inciting fear and discrimination. Dreamers are our loved ones, our friends, our neighbors, and we must protect them.

Thank you for standing up for these extraordinary young people.

¡La lucha sigue! 
The fight continues!


Got a Twitter account?  Tweet your demands to respect and protect DACA to: @POTUS, @realDonaldTrump, @VP, @MarkAmodeiNV2, @SenDeanHeller

America’s Core Values

— by Madeleine Albright, Former Secretary of State

Photo Credit: NBC News

By now, I’m sure you’ve heard about the executive order on immigration and refugees that the President signed on Friday. It bans Syrian refugees from entering our country, suspends the entire refugee program for 120 days, cuts in half the number of refugees we can admit, and halts all travel from certain Muslim-majority countries.

I felt I had no choice but to speak out against it in the strongest possible terms.

This is a cruel measure that represents a stark departure from America’s core values. We have a proud tradition of sheltering those fleeing violence and persecution, and have always been the world leader in refugee resettlement. As a refugee myself who fled the communist takeover of Czechoslovakia, I personally benefited from this country’s generosity and its tradition of openness. This order would end that tradition, and discriminate against those fleeing a brutal civil war in Syria.

There is no data to support the idea that refugees pose a threat. This policy is based on fear, not facts. The refugee vetting process is robust and thorough. It already consists of over 20 steps, ensuring that refugees are vetted more intensively than any other category of traveler.

The process typically takes 18-24 months, and is conducted while they are still overseas. I am concerned that this order’s attempts at “extreme vetting” will effectively halt our ability to accept anyone at all. When the administration makes wild claims about Syrian refugees pouring over our borders, they are relying on alternative facts — or as I like to call it, fiction.

The truth is that America can simultaneously protect the security of our borders and our citizens and maintain our country’s long tradition of welcoming those who have nowhere else to turn. These goals are not mutually exclusive. Indeed, they are the obligation of a country built by immigrants.

Refugees should not be viewed as a burden or as potential terrorists. They have already made great contributions to our national life. Syrian refugees are learning English, getting good jobs, buying homes, and starting businesses. In other words, they are doing what other generations of refugees — including my own — did. And I have no doubt that, if given the opportunity, they will become an essential part of our American fabric.

By targeting Muslim-majority countries for immigration bans and by expressing a clear preference for refugees who are religious minorities, there’s no question this order is biased against Muslims. And when one faith is targeted, it puts us all at risk.

I will never forget sailing into New York Harbor for the first time and seeing the Statue of Liberty when I came here as a child. It proclaims “give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” There is no fine print on the Statue of Liberty, and today she is weeping.

This executive order does not reflect American values. If you agree, make your voice heard now.

Trump to State Dept. Officials Objecting to Muslim Ban: ‘Get with the Program or… Go’

If Monday’s White House press briefing is any indication, internal dissent will not be tolerated under Trump
— by Jon Queally, staff writer at Common Dreams

White House press secretary Sean Spicer on Monday said that State Department officials who don’t like President Trump’s Muslim ban can “either get with the program or get out.” (Photo: C-SPAN)

First of all, those objecting to a White House executive order which sowed “chaos, heartbreak, and resistance” at airports across the United States over the weekend are blowing things “out of proportion.” And secondly, those inside the government who oppose President Donald Trump’s blanket ban on guests, immigrants, and refugees from seven Muslim-majority countries have just two choices at this point: get in line or get lost.

Those were the two key takeaways from remarks by White House press secretary Sean Spicer on Monday afternoon when asked to account for the controversial ban and a draft dissent cable put forth by State Departments employees, and obtained by news outlets, officially challenging the order.

The internal memo (pdf)—which is marked “sensitive but unclassified” and that dozens of career employees have or are expected to sign as a formal registration of dissent—argues that the hastily ordered ban “runs counter to core American values of nondiscrimination, fair play, and extending a warm welcome to foreign visitors and immigrants.”

As of Monday morning, reports the Washington Post, “edits and signatures were still being collected in advance of submitting the memo to State Department leadership.”

At an early afternoon press briefing, Spicer said the ban imposed by Trump has been “blown way out of proportion” and dismissed those challenging it, including any State Department officials who might back the dissent cable.

“I think they should either get with the program or they can go,” Spicer responded when asked if the administration was aware of its circulation and what he thought of those who might back its message.

Watch:

Beyond the core moral objections, the letter from the career diplomats argues that Trump’s ban is actually counterproductive in terms of its claimed purpose, which is to keep the American people more safe. According to the document:

Despite the Executive Order’s focus on them, a vanishingly small number of terror attacks on U.S. soil have been committed by foreign nationals who  recently entered the United States on an immigrant or nonimmigrant visa.  Rather,  the overwhelming majority of attacks have been committed by native-born or naturalized U.S. citizens—individuals who have been living in the United States for decades, if not since birth. In the isolated incidents of foreign nationals entering the U.S. on a visa to commit acts of terror, the nationals have come from a range of  countries, including many (such as Pakistan or Saudi Arabia) which are not  covered by the Executive Order.

“We do not need to place a blanket ban that keeps 220 million people—men,  women, and children—from entering the United States to protect our homeland. We  do not need to alienate entire societies to stay safe,” the memo concludes. “And we do not need to sacrifice  our reputation as a nation which is open and welcoming to protect our families.  It  is well within our reach to create a visa process which is more secure, which  reflects our American values, and which would make the Department proud.”

45 – Week #1: DO AS I SAY!

President Trump signed many executive actions this week in a wide range of policy areas. In general, these orders and memos explain to executive branch employees what to prioritize and how. In some areas, Congress has given the executive branch explicit authority to set the policy, such as determining the number of refugees who can enter the U.S. each year. However, spending federal money requires Congress, and changing existing rules requires the rulemaking process.

Some edicts began immediately, while others require other circumstances, such as the confirmation of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director nominee, Rep. Mick Mulvaney [R, SC-5]. As with former President Obama, many of the executive actions signed this week will face legal challenges and a long road to implementation, while others are having immediate effects.

Several of these actions will require Congressional action (such as approving supplemental funds for the border wall or to hire additional immigration and customs enforcement officers).  Many of these will involve Congressional actions.  Take a look, then write or call your MOCs:

EXECUTIVE ORDERS:

Minimizing the Economic Burden of ACA Repeal
 
Expediting Environmental Reviews and Approvals (Infrastructure)
 
Enhancing Public Safety in the U.S. Interior (Deportations/Sanctuary Cities)
 
Border Security & Enforcement (Build the Wall)
 
Exec Branch Ethics Committments(?)

EXECUTIVE MEMORANDA:

Guidance For Heads of Executive Depts & Agencies
 
Hiring Freeze
 
U.S. Withdrawal from TPP Negotiations & Agreement
 
Mexico City Policy
 
Construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline
 
Construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline
 
Construction of American Pipelines
 
Streamlining Permitting & Reducing Regulatory Burdens
  
Plan to Defeat ISIS
 
Organization of NSC and HSC

If You’re Against Immigrants, You’re Against My Grandma

Many good kids — with the same American dreams my grandparents had — now fear being exiled to a land alien to them.
— by Mitchell Zimmerman

One day in a Latvian town more than 100 years ago, when my grandmother wasn’t much more than a girl, she heard that the czar’s “recruiters” were coming to conscript men into the Russian army for 20-year terms.

Two days before they came, a handsome young man she’d known only slightly told her he was going to America instead, and asked her to come along as his bride. She agreed.

Their travels weren’t wholly lawful. Lacking proper papers to enter Germany, where they planned to embark on a steamer to New York, they were smuggled across the border at night, in a cart.

Some 40-odd years later, when I was a small child, my mother would take me to Brooklyn to visit them. I recall grandma as a short, ancient grownup, her face square and her cheeks jowly. Despite having lived in New York for decades, she still spoke little English — only enough to make halting jokes. I don’t think she ever became a citizen.

She and grandpa faced hardship and discrimination. They’d been called “kikes” and “Jew bastards.” They’d been asked, “Why don’t you go back where you came from?”

New York’s Ellis Island, circa 1900. (Photo: NIAID / Flickr)

But they stayed, and their children and grandchildren — including my brother, a journalist, and myself, a lawyer — climbed the ladder to success.

My grandparents come to mind when I meet my young friend — “Jesús,” let’s call him, a pro bono client.

Jesús, too, is an immigrant. But he recalls little of coming to America, and less of Mexico, his birthplace. He was only 7 when his mother, hoping for a better life and lacking proper papers, carried him here.

Jesús grew up in East Palo Alto, California — a small city not far geographically from the prosperity of Silicon Valley, but a world away socio-economically. Plagued by poverty, drugs, and crime, the town was once the murder capital of America.

When he reached high school, Jesús found himself behind the kids from the richer towns. But he enrolled in the school’s computer science track, applied himself, and ultimately won a nationwide “Young Entrepreneur of the Year” competition.

The school offered him little guidance about a path to college, but he found his own mentors. Eventually, he earned a B.S. from a small local college, paid for by soccer and academic scholarships — and hard work.

Jesús meanwhile devoted himself to diffusing conflicts among Latino and black gangs in violent neighborhoods. “When asked about putting himself in harm’s way,” a counselor informed me, “Jesús said he didn’t want to live in a world where people hate each other based on the color of their skin.”

For some people, this is all irrelevant. All we need to know about Jesús is that he’s “illegal” — and so should be deported.

This would be fundamentally unfair. Jesús, like many others whose parents brought them here, had no say in whether or how he entered the United States. But also like those others, he’s lived an entirely American life.

I assisted Jesús with his ultimately successful application for DACA status.

This Obama-era program (in full, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) offered a little security to youths like Jesús who arrived as children. If they were in school (or graduated) and had no criminal record, they were eligible to remain in the U.S. for a renewable two-year period.

With an anti-immigrant administration coming into office, however, many of these good kids fear being exiled to a land alien to them. I hope Trump has the decency to let them be.

Jesús is now 24 years old and works at a tech start-up. He has an American wife, son, and baby daughter. His aspirations, like my grandparents’ were, are to educate his kids, work hard and prosper, and continue to inspire others to set aside despair and reach for the stars.

How American those ambitions seem to me.


Mitchell Zimmerman is an intellectual property lawyer who devotes much of his practice to pro bono work. Distributed by OtherWords.org.

FACT CHECK: Heck on Immigration

factcheckheck

Joe Heck claims he supports DREAMers and Immigration Reform.  However, his actual RECORD shows a different story.

  • Congressman Heck said he opposed the Senate bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform bill.
  • Congressman Heck said he opposed the DREAM Act.
  • Congressman Heck wants to repeal birthright citizenship.
  • Congressman Heck voted four times to defund DACA and voted in favor of suing the President over his executive actions on immigration.
  • Congressman Heck voted against allowing DREAMers to join the military in exchange for a pathway to citizenship.
  • Congressman Heck praised the Arizona “show your papers” law.
  • Congressman Heck remained silent and continued his support of Donald Trump after Trump called Mexican immigrants “criminals,” “rapists,” and “drug dealers.”

In contrast:

  • Catherine Cortez Masto led 35 Attorneys General in support of comprehensive immigration reform.
  • Catherine Cortez Masto cracked down on and prosecuted Notario fraud and unlicensed medical providers who target immigrant communities and undocumented workers.
  • Catherine Cortez Masto increased funding for victims of sexual and domestic violence, including funds for grants to assist victims petitioning for U-Visas.

Background

  1.  Heck opposed comprehensive immigration reform bill passed by the Senate. [KSNV, 7/3/13, Las Vegas Sun, 7/2/13, Reno Gazette-Journal, 7/8/15]
  2. Heck refused to sign discharge petition to force an immigration reform Vote [Reno Gazette-Journal, 4/20/14, Ralston Reports, Jon Ralston, 11/26/13]
  3. Heck voted four times to defund DACA, deport DREAMers [CQ, 1/14/15; HR 240, Vote 29,1/14/15, CQ, 12/4/14; H.R. 5759, Vote 550, 12/4/14, CQ, 6/6/13, H.R. 2217, Vote 208, 6/6/13, CQ, 6/7/12; H.Amdt.1266 to H.R. 5855, Vote 363, 6/7/12, National Journal, 7/6/15]
  4. Heck opposed the DREAM Act. [Las Vegas Review-Journal, 1/31/13, Associated Press, 4/8/12]
  5. Heck signed on to sue President Obama over the expansion of DACA and implementation of DAPA. [Las Vegas Review-Journal, 1/18/15]
  6. Heck “voted against allowing” DREAMers to join the military. [Defense One, 5/31/15]
  7. Heck: citizenship should not automatically be granted to all U.S.-born children. [Associated Press, 2/4/11, KVVU, 2/2/11]
  8. Immigration Activists Arrested After Protesting Outside Congressman Heck’s Office, Heck Sent Fundraising Email After Immigration Protestors’ Arrest That Said He Would Not be “Bullied Into Amnesty.”  [Las Vegas Review-Journal, 6/16/14, Las Vegas Review-Journal, 6/9/15]
  9. Heck backed an amendment by Steve King to make deporting undocumented youths easier.  [Think Progress, 10/25/13]

NV Dems Statement on Trump Opening Las Vegas HQ

Trump campaign invited former Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, confirming again that his immigration plan hasn’t changed

Las Vegas, NV – In response to the Trump campaign opening their Las Vegas headquarters today with former Arizona Governor Jan Brewer, Nevada Assemblyman and Democratic National Committeeman Nelson Araujo released the following statement:

“It’s fitting that Donald Trump would invite the most extreme anti-immigrant Republican he could find to open his Las Vegas headquarters. After Trump has spent the past year demonizing immigrants, the fact that Nevada Republicans would promote a hateful individual like Jan Brewer is yet another disgusting insult to Latinos. Immigrant families like mine are the heart and soul of so many communities across the Las Vegas Valley. Once again, we are reminded that Trump’s divisive immigration plan hasn’t changed one bit. If he ever makes it to the White House, Trump will rip apart families and deport millions of hard-working people from the United States.”

In 2010, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signed SB 1070, the most extreme legislative effort in the county to discriminate against and deport undocumented immigrants.

Declaración del partido demócrata de Nevada sobre la inauguración de la sede de campaña de Donald Trump en Las Vegas

La campaña de Donald Trump invitó a la ex-gobernadora de Arizona, Jan Brewer, confirmando una vez más que su plan de inmigración no ha cambiado

Las Vegas, NV – Respondiendo a la inauguración de la nueva sede de la campaña Trump en Las Vegas con la ex-gobernadora Jan Brewer, el Asambleísta y Miembro del Comité Demócrata Nacional Nelson Araujo publicó la declaración siguiente:

“Es obvio que Donald Trump decidió invitar a la Republicana anti-inmigrante más extrema que pudo encontrar para ayudarle abrir su sede en Las Vegas. Después de que Trump pasó un año clasificando los inmigrantes como criminales, el hecho de que los Republicanos de Nevada promuevan a alguien tan odiosa y divisionista como Jan Brewer es un insulto repugnante a los latinos. Familias inmigrantes como la mía son el corazón y el alma de tantas comunidades en el valle de Las Vegas. Ya de nuevo nos recordamos que el plan de inmigración de Trump no ha cambiado para nada. Si de alguna manera logra llegar a la Casa Blanca, Trump separará familias y deportará a millones de personas trabajadoras de los Estados Unidos.”
En el 2010, la Gobernadora Jan Brewer firmó el SB 1070, el esfuerzo legislativo más extremo en el país que discrimina en contra de inmigrantes, y deporta los indocumentados.

NV Community Leader Responds to Trump’s Call to Restrict Immigration from the Philippines

Captain Humayun Khan, who died in Iraq while serving in the U.S. Army, was an immigrant and an American hero. But we also have everyday heroes in our own families and neighborhoods. Maybe it’s your own brother, sister, friend, teacher or neighbor. Tell us why this person is an immigrant hero. We will review stories to share and help us in the fight.

Immigrants are under attack this election year. Donald Trump is running an anti-immigrant campaign based on hatred and bigotry. So we need your help, and 11 million immigrants in fear of deportation need your help too.

Let’s fight against these attacks by celebrating the contributions Latinos, Asian American and Pacific Islanders, Afro-Caribbeans and other immigrants have made.

Hillary-NVCommunity leader and Filipino activist Margie Gonzalez issued the following statement following Donald Trump’s call for restrictions on immigration from countries like the Philippines:

“Donald Trump’s call to restrict immigration from countries like the Philippines shows once again that his divisive agenda is too dangerous for our community not to do everything we can to stop him. An estimated 150,000 Filipino Americans who live in Nevada could be impacted by Trump’s misguided proposal. As a proud Filipina dedicated to uplifting and empowering our community, I refuse to allow immigrant families like mine to be the target of Trump’s reckless and baseless discrimination. The Filipino community in Nevada makes our economy vibrant and the fabric of our nation stronger.”

“Hillary Clinton has a plan to fight for comprehensive immigration reform and reunite families. Filipinos have some of the longest visa wait times – up to 23 years in many cases. Hillary Clinton knows that America is a nation of immigrants, and she understands that our diversity makes us stronger together.”

FACT CHECK: Catherine Cortez Masto on Crime v. Joe Heck

While Cortez Masto Prosecuted Criminals, Congressman Heck Threatened Nevadans’ Safety By Voting Against More Funding For Cops

Las Vegas, NV – Another day, another out-of-state special interest group propping up Congressman Heck’s campaign with lies about Catherine Cortez Masto. Last night, it was reported that Washington Republicans are running yet another ad that lies about Catherine Cortez Masto’s record while ignoring Congressman Heck’s own record of putting partisan politics ahead of Nevadans’ safety

The truth is: crime went down during the eight years Cortez Masto was Attorney General. Nevada law enforcement is supporting Cortez Masto because she has a proven record of solving problems and working with law enforcement to keep Nevada communities safe

“Nevada cops support Catherine Cortez Masto because unlike Congressman Heck, she has consistently put the safety of Nevadans ahead of partisan politics,” said Zach Hudson, spokesperson for Catherine Cortez Masto for Senate. “The facts are clear: while Catherine Cortez Masto was prosecuting criminals, Congressman Heck was voting against more funding for Nevada cops. Washington Republicans are lying about Catherine’s record to distract from Congressman Heck threatening the safety of Nevadans by voting against more funding for Nevada law enforcement.

In March, Cortez Masto was endorsed by the Nevada Association of Public Safety Officers (NAPSO), the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), the Peace Officers Research of Nevada (PORAN), the Washoe County Sheriff Deputies Association, and the Southern Nevada Conference of Police and Sheriffs (SNCOPS) in her campaign for Senate. SNCOPS consists of: the Henderson Police Supervisors Association (HPSA), the Las Vegas Peace Officers Association (LVPOA), the Las Vegas Police Protective Association (LVPPA), and the Las Vegas Police Managers and Supervisors Association (LVPMSA). This was the first time in Nevada history the organizations came together with one unanimous endorsement.

View the facts about this blatantly false ad below:

NRSC AD “WHO” – PUSHBACK 8/2/16

Voiceover: Who do you trust to keep your family safe?

 

FACT: LAW ENFORCEMENT UNIONS THAT ENCOMPASS ALMOST EVERY PEACE OFFICER IN NEVADA UNANIMOUSLY ENDORSED CATHERINE CORTEZ MASTO FOR SENATE…

Headline: Associated Press: “Nevada Police Unions Back Democrat Cortez Masto For Senate.” [Associated Press, 3/2/16]

Coalition Of Nevada Law Enforcement Unions Endorsed Cortez Masto For U.S. Senate. “A coalition of Nevada law enforcement unions is announcing support for Democratic Senate candidate Catherine Cortez Masto. Cortez Masto’s campaign announced endorsements Wednesday from the Nevada Association of Public Safety Officers, Peace Officers Research of Nevada, the Fraternal Order of Police and the Southern Nevada Conference of Police and Sheriffs. The latter group includes the Las Vegas Police Protective Association and organizations representing Henderson and Las Vegas police supervisors.” [Associated Press,3/2/16]

The Law Enforcement Unions Cited Cortez Masto’s Work To Fight Human Trafficking And Support For Funding More Police Officers As Reasons For The Endorsement. “Cortez Masto’s previous job as Nevada’s attorney general involved frequent work with law enforcement. Representatives from the unions cited her initiatives to fight human trafficking and her support of funding more police hires as reasons for the endorsement.” [Associated Press, 3/2/16]

Cortez Masto Picked Up Support From Nevada Police Unions.“Former state Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto (D) picked up endorsements from the Nevada Association of Public Safety Officers, the Fraternal Order of Police, the Peace Officers Reserve of Nevada, and the Southern Nevada Conference of Police and Sheriffs Wednesday.” [National Journal, 3/3/16]

…BECAUSE THEY KNOW THAT AS ATTORNEY GENERAL, CATHERINE CORTEZ MASTO FOUGHT TO KEEP NEVADANS SAFE AND BRING CRIMINALS TO JUSTICE

Fox News: Cortez Masto “Dedicated Herself To Fighting Sex Trafficking In Our State.” In February 2015, Fox News In The Morning reported, “Catherine Cortez Masto. Former Nevada Attorney General. Dedicated herself to fighting sex trafficking in our state. ‘The numbers that we’ve seen in our state, when these kids come through, 60 percent of them are our own. They’re homegrown.’ she decided it’s time to do more to hold the perpetrators accountable.” [KVVU, 2/19/15]

AG Cortez Masto Sponsored And Pushed For Legislation To Combat Child Sex Trafficking In Nevada. According to an article by Alex Pompliano of the Nevada Media Alliance, “Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto and other supports of the bill will join Sandoval as he signs AB67 into law. The bill establishes the crime of sex trafficking of children and adults, and makes victims eligible for state assistance and allows them to sue their traffickers. By doing so, the bill holds pimps accountable and protects the victims of sex trafficking. Cortez Masto, a primary proponent of the bill, says bills passed this year by the Legislature will serve as a springboard for more anti-trafficking measures in future years.” [Carson Now, 6/6/13]

Cortez Masto’s Bill Created New Tools For Law Enforcement To Stop Sex Trafficking And Gave More Recourse For Victims Of Sex Trafficking. According to a press release posted on the Mesquite Citizen website, “The bill was approved by unanimous votes of both houses of the legislature. The bill will now be sent to Governor Brian Sandoval’s for final approval. A public signing with Gov. Sandoval will take place. Background on AB 67: Changes the current pandering statute to the sex trafficking statute. The federal definition of sex trafficking will be used to increase penalties by one sentencing level. Creates law enforcement tools for racketeering, conspiracy, and wiretapping. Those convicted would have to register as a sex offender, and their assets will be seized, liquidated and provided as relief to the victims. Restitution will be mandatory with the ability to bring a civil cause of action. The prosecution will be allowed to preserve the victim’s testimony for trial.” [Mesquite Citizen, 6/3/13]

Cortez Masto Strengthened Laws To Protect Kids From Predators: “In My Office, We Actually Are The Investigators And Prosecutors. We Are The Ones Who Lure The Predators So They Are Not Preying On Our Kids.” “Masto’s work has resulted in new laws strengthening the registration and notification requirements of convicted sex offenders and preventing a person from luring someone believed to be a child. During her presentation the attorney general told the students how her office works to get the ‘bad guys’ each day. ‘It’s happening here and every community in our state. In my office, we actually are the investigators and prosecutors. We are the ones who lure the predators so they are not preying on our kids. We have laws that allow us to pretend we are the 12-year-old so that we can lure those predators. We have seen horrific cases here in Nevada and we want to make sure our kids are protected and they don’t become that next statistic,’ she said.” [Pahrump Valley Times, 3/21/14]

Cortez Masto Often Visited Schools To Discuss Internet Dangers With Children. “Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto said she often visits schools to discuss the dangers of technology, especially on the Internet, where children might trust strangers and sometimes hide activity from parents. When Cortez Masto walks into a sixth-grade classroom, she said almost all students raise their hands when asked whether they own a cell phone, belong to a social network, play video games with strangers and share photographs online. ‘This is at the sixth grade,’ she said. ‘The technology these kids use have become an extension of their being.’” [Las Vegas Sun, 8/2/10]

Headline: Las Vegas Review-Journal: “Cortez Masto’s Senate Hopes Mirror Her AG Track Record.” [Las Vegas Review-Journal,4/30/15]

As Attorney General, Cortez Masto Visited All 17 Counties To Help Nevadans Address Domestic Violence, Sex Trafficking, Home Foreclosures, And Prescription Drug Use. “As attorney general, Cortez Masto visited all 17 counties to help Nevadans with their problems, from domestic violence and sex trafficking to home foreclosures and prescription drug abuse, which is just as prevalent in the rurals as it is in urban Las Vegas and Reno.” [Las Vegas Review-Journal, 4/30/15]

Cortez Masto Spent Eight Years As Attorney General Working In A Bipartisan Manner To Fight Sex Trafficking, Sex Offenders, And Protect Seniors. “After five terms in the U.S. Senate, Harry Reid is leaving behind some pretty big shoes to fill. And so far there are three candidates hoping to do that. Of course the Democratic Party wants to see that seat stay blue. The Reid Machine is fully behind Catherine Cortez Masto, who spent 8 years as our Attorney General. There she fought sex trafficking, sex offenders and to protect senior citizens. She says bipartisanship politics is the key. ‘These are all areas I have a proven record of working on in a bipartisan manner. It is about building partnerships and coalitions. That’s what we need in Washington and I have a proven record to show I can do it,’ Cortez Masto said during a recent interview.” [KTVN, 2/1/16]

Cortez Masto Said She Isn’t Concerned With Polls Or Pundits, She Wants To Talk With Nevadans About The Issues, Find Out What’s Important To Them, And Fight On Behalf Of Nevada. “Cortez Masto is not concerned about polls or pundits that call the race a toss-up. ‘Right now my focus is just on this race, it’s on getting out and talking to people about the issues,’ she said after the forum. ‘I came out early and rolled out my campaign on April 8 just for that reason. I wanted to make sure I was getting around the state, similar to what I did when I was attorney general, and continue to talk about the issues, to learn what’s important to them and the things that I want to fight for on their behalf.’” [Record-Courier, 8/14/15]

Cortez Masto: Nevada Needs A U.S. Senator Who Is Going To Work For The Best Interests Of The State. “Cortez Masto reached her term limit as attorney general last year and set her sights on another goal. ‘I have worked very hard on behalf of the state — on behalf of people, women, children, seniors — fighting on their behalf for businesses so that they can continue to grow. And that’s what we need in this state, somebody who is going to work on behalf of the best interests of this state as a United States senator.’” [Record-Courier, 8/14/15]

Voiceover: In Catherine Cortez Masto’s last term as Attorney General, Nevada murder went up 11 percent. Robbery went up 28 percent. Rape 51 percent.

 

THE TRUTH: WASHINGTON REPUBLICANS ARE CHERRY-PICKING CRIME STATISTICS – WHEN CORTEZ MASTO WAS ATTORNEY GENERAL, MOST VIOLENT CRIME DECLINED

From 2007 To 2014, The Total Index Offenses Index Declined From 116,814 To 92,376[2014 Crime in Nevada, Total Index Crimes In Nevada for Past Decade (2005 to 2014), p.55 Accessed 8/1/16]

From 2007 To 2014, The Murder Index Declined From 194 To 168[2014 Crime in Nevada, Total Index Crimes In Nevada for Past Decade (2005 to 2014), p.55 Accessed 8/1/16]

From 2007 To 2014, The Robbery Index Declined From 6,932 To 5,951[2014 Crime in Nevada, Total Index Crimes In Nevada for Past Decade (2005 to 2014), p.55 Accessed 8/1/16]

From 2007 To 2014, The Aggregated Assault Index Declined From 11,039 To 10,466[2014 Crime in Nevada, Total Index Crimes In Nevada for Past Decade (2005 to 2014), p.55 Accessed 8/1/16]

From 2007 To 2014, The Burglary Index Declined From 24,839 To 21,787[2014 Crime in Nevada, Total Index Crimes In Nevada for Past Decade (2005 to 2014), p.55 Accessed 8/1/16]

From 2007 To 2014, The Larceny Index Declined From 49,744 To 42,122. [2014 Crime in Nevada, Total Index Crimes In Nevada for Past Decade (2005 to 2014), p.55 Accessed 8/1/16]

From 2007 To 2014, The Motor Vehicle Theft Index Declined From 22,333 To 10,128[2014 Crime in Nevada, Total Index Crimes In Nevada for Past Decade (2005 to 2014), p.55 Accessed8/1/16]

From 2007 To 2014, The Arson Index Declined From 639 To 403[2014 Crime in Nevada, Total Index Crimes In Nevada for Past Decade (2005 to 2014), p.55 Accessed 8/1/16]

Crime Rates Are Volatile From Year To Year, When Considering Crime Rates Look At Averages To Filter Out Noise. “Trump is right that 2015 saw a crime increase. But not only was it tiny, it hasn’t come close to reversing the spectacular decline of the past two decades. Murders rose in many cities, but individual cities’ crime rates are like the performance of individual stocks — they’re more volatile, year to year, than the overall average. Violent crime in general was up only 1.7 percent in 2015. As in investing, we diversify to reduce risk — similarly, when considering crime rates, we should look at averages to filter out the noise.” [Bloomberg, 8/1/16]

REALITY: IT’S RICH THAT HECK’S WASHINGTON ALLIES WOULD ATTACK CORTEZ MASTO ON CRIME, WHEN HECK HAS VOTED MULTIPLE TIMES AGAINST MORE FUNDING FOR COPS AND RESOURCES TO PROSECUTE CRIMES

Heck Voted Against AB 461 That Ensured Clark County Used The MORE COPS Tax To Hire More Police And Allowed Nye County To Impose A Half-Percent Sales Tax In Order To Hire More Police And Firefighters. According to the Legislative Counsel’s Digest of AB 461, “The Clark County Sales and Use Tax Act of 2005 authorized the Board of County Commissioners of Clark County to impose up to one-half of 1 percent sales and use tax to employ and equip additional police officers for various police departments in Clark County. Section 1 of this bill adds a requirement that any governmental entity that authorizes expenditures from the tax revenues for a police department must submit periodic reports to the Legislature concerning the use of that money, and authorizes the Legislative Commission to review and investigate those expenditures.  Sections 3-22 of this bill are modeled on the provisions of the Clark County Sales and Use Tax Act of 2005, and authorize the Board of County Commissioners of Nye County to impose an additional sales tax of up to one-half of 1 percent for the purposes of recruiting, employing and equipping additional firefighters, deputy sheriffs and other public safety personnel and constructing, improving and equipping public safety facilities in Nye County. Any proposed change in the use of the proceeds of the tax must be submitted to the voters and be approved by the Legislature. Section 17.5 of this bill contains requirements identical to those in section 1 of this bill concerning reporting of expenditures of the tax revenues and the review and investigation of those expenditures.” Heck Voted Against The Bill. [AB 461, LCB Digest; Senate Floor Vote, 5/25/07]

Heck Voted Against $3 Million For COPS Program, $1 Million For Violence Against Women Prevention And Prosecution Programs, And Grants To Address Backlogs Of Sexual Assault Kits. In May 2014, Heck voted against a: “Moore, D-WI, motion to recommit the bill to the House Appropriations Committee and report it back immediately with an amendment which would increase by $1 million each, funds provided in the bill for Violence Against Women Prevention and Prosecution programs, grants to combat violence against women, State and Local Law Enforcement Assistance and grants to address backlogs of sexual assault kits. It would increase by $3 million each, funds provided in the bill for Community Oriented Policing Services and for hiring under this program.” The motion was rejected by a 185-220 vote. [CQ, 5/30/14; motion to recommit H.R. 4660, Vote 268, 5/30/14]

Heck Voted Against Increasing Funds By $20.5 Million For Programs That Aid In The Prevention And Prosecution Of Acts Of Violence Against Women. In May 2012, Heck voted against a: “Nadler, D-N.Y., motion to recommit the bill to the House Appropriations Committee and report it back immediately with an amendment that would increase by $20.5 million the amount provided in the bill for programs that aid in the prevention and prosecution of acts of violence against women. It would reduce by the same amount general administrative funding for the Commerce and Justice departments and the Office of Science and Technology.” The motion was rejected by a 181-233 vote. [CQ, 5/10/12; motion to recommit H.R. 5326, Vote 248,5/10/12]

Heck Voted Against Providing An Additional $3 Million For The Violence Against Women Prevention And Prosecution Programs And $3 Million For The Juvenile Justice Programs. In June 2015, Heck voted against the: “Brownley, D-CA, motion to recommit the bill to the House Appropriations Committee with instructions to report back immediately with an amendment that would provide an additional $3 million for sexual assault victims assistance within the Violence Against Women Prevention and Prosecution Programs account and an additional $3 million for missing and exploited children programs in the Juvenile Justice Programs account. It would decrease funding for the Justice Information Technology Account by $6 million.” The motion was rejected by a vote of 184-240. [CQ, 6/3/15; H.R. 2578, Vote 296,6/3/15]

Voiceover: When Cortez Masto left office, Nevada ranked as America’s 3rd most dangerous state. FACT: CORTEZ MASTO LED THE CHARGE TO ADDRESS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IN NEVADA

Elko Daily Free Press Editorial: Cortez Masto Led The Fight To Combat Domestic Violence And Left Behind A Legacy We Hope Others Follow. In January 2015, the Elko Daily Free Press editorial board wrote, “Before she left office, Catherine Cortez Masto released information to combat domestic violence in the state, which is something she battled throughout her time as attorney general. While she is no longer the state’s chief law enforcement officer, she has left behind a legacy we hope others follow. She led the way against domestic violence through the Nevada Council for the Prevention of Domestic Violence. The NCPDV’s mission is to combat domestic violence through awareness, legislation and the support of agencies involved in the fight against domestic violence, according to the AG’s office.” [Elko Daily Free Press, Editorial, 1/13/15]

Elko Daily Free Press: “Cortez Masto Has Been A Leading State Figure In The Fight Against Domestic Violence.”“Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto has been a leading state figure in the fight against domestic violence and is a member of Nevada’s domestic violence fatality review team, which releases its latest findings today. ‘Unfortunately for Nevada, we have been the leader, number one in the nation for the number of women who are murdered per capita by men with handguns. A majority of them are intimate relationships,’ Masto said. Washoe and Clark counties each have a domestic violence fatality review team, but domestic violence homicides aren’t limited to the state’s urban areas. ‘In the State of Nevada, domestic violence issues unfortunately exist in every community,’ Masto added.” [Elko Daily Free Press, 4/25/13]

Cortez Masto Focused On Domestic Violence Prevention In Nevada For Years And Fought For More State & Federal Funding For Victims. “‘People should understand that domestic violence crosses socioeconomic backgrounds, it could happen in any family and it could happen to anyone,’ explains Catherine Cortez Masto, former Nevada Attorney General. Cortez Masto focused on domestic violence prevention in Nevada for years and she says it comes down to educating the community in order to gain more support, ‘It is a lack of resources, not only do we have a lack of state funding we have a lack of federal funding. There is only so much that goes around to help individuals who are dealing with a domestic violence situation.’” [KRNV, 10/29/15]

Headline: Sparks Tribune: “Domestic Violence Gets A Closer Look.” [Sparks Tribune, 1/12/12]

Sparks Tribune: Cortez Masto Led The Charge To Address And Combat Rising Violence Against Women. “The Nevada Domestic Violence Fatality Review Team (DVFRT) held its inaugural meeting on Thursday to address and combat rising violence against women, with Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto leading the charge. The Silver State leads the nation in the per capita number of women murdered as a result of domestic violence, a trend that for years has plagued urban areas such as Reno and Las Vegas, as well as rural areas such as Elko County and, particularly, in Native American communities. ‘It exists in every community in our state,’ Masto said. ‘Nobody escapes it.’ The state Legislature, at Masto’s behest, created the DVFRT last year and authorized a multi-disciplinary team comprised of prosecutors, police, domestic violence service providers, treatment providers and community and faith leaders to review the deaths of domestic violence victims.” [Daily Sparks Tribune, 1/12/12]

Cortez Masto Addressed Domestic Violence With Boy & Girl Scouts, And Her AG’s Office Help Create A Merit Badge Called “Peace Begins At Home.” “Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez-Masto will address domestic violence when nearly 300 Boy Scouts gather Saturday for a Merit Badge Fair at Clayton Middle School in northwest Reno. Cortez-Masto’s office has worked with the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts to create a merit badge called ‘Peace Begins at Home,’ which teaches Scouts what to do if they see signs of abuse. ‘When I was running for attorney general, I named domestic violence and sexual assault as two of the top priorities for my office,’ Cortez-Masto said in a recent speech. ‘They still are, and we are actively working to raise awareness of the issues, ensure victim safety and improve offender accountability.’ She said more than 36,000 victims, including 16,000 children, in Nevada contacted agencies for assistance in 2010.” [Reno Gazette-Journal, 3/25/11]

FACT: CORTEZ MASTO CHAIRED THE STATE COMMITTEE TO ADDRESS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

Cortez Masto Was The Chair Of The Nevada Council For The Prevention Of Domestic Violence. According to an article by Dave Maxwell of the Lincoln County Recorder, “State Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto chaired the quarterly meeting of the Nevada Council for the Prevention of Domestic Violence (NCPDV) Aug. 1 at the Rapport Executive Leadership Retreat facility in Alamo. The public was invited to attend. Cortez Masto said, ‘Domestic violence exists in every community in the state, and Nevada leads the nation, per capita, in the number of women who are murdered each year as a result of domestic violence.’” [Lincoln County Recorder, 8/12/13]

Headline: Lake Tahoe News: “Meth, Domestic Violence Top List Of Concerns For Nev. AG.” [Lake Tahoe News, 3/28/11]

Cortez Masto Ran For Attorney General To Address Issues, Including Domestic Violence, And Chaired Nevada’s Domestic Violence Prevention Council. “Masto, a native Nevadan, said she ran for Nevada attorney general because she saw so many issues that needed to be addressed at the state level. She took the oath of office in January 2007 for her first term and was sworn in Jan. 3, 2011, for her second term. Another issue facing the state is domestic violence, which impacts women and children as well as animals. Masto chairs the Domestic Violence Prevention Council. ‘Nevada leads the nation in the number of women murdered through domestic violence. My office has put together a Fatality Review Team and we have a prosecutor on staff. There is a need to understand what is means to be a domestic violence victim. It includes a cycle of violence and is a control issue,’ she said.” [Lake Tahoe News, 3/28/11]

Cortez Masto: Survivors Provide An Important Voice On State Committee For Domestic Violence. “Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto is inviting former victims of domestic violence to apply for a vacant position on the state Committee on Domestic Violence. Masto says survivors provide an important voice for the nine-member committee. It oversees treatment programs for people who commit domestic violence. Members include a mental health professional, law enforcer, prosecutor, advocate, judge and domestic violence victims and survivors.” [Associated Press, 5/7/14]

FACT: CORTEZ MASTO’S OFFICE FOUGHT FOR AND SECURED FUNDING TO COMBAT SEXUAL ASSAULT AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

Headline: Las Vegas Sun: “Marriage License Fee Hike Would Fund Domestic Violence Programs.” [Las Vegas Sun, 3/9/09]

AG Cortez Masto Testified In Support Of SB 14 That Would Increase Marriage License Fee From $20 To $25 To Fund Programs That Combat Domestic Violence. “Half of all Clark County homicides are related to domestic violence, Attorney General Catherine Masto told a legislative committee Monday. Masto was testifying before the Senate Finance Committee in support of a bill to raise the marriage license fee to fund programs to combat domestic violence. Senate Bill 14 would boost the marriage license fee from $20 to $25. The cost of a license now is $55, of which $20 of that goes to domestic violence programs that provide shelter, hot lines and support groups.” [Las Vegas Sun,3/9/09]

  • Cortez Masto: Safety Is Enhanced When Individuals Have Access To Hotlines, Shelters, Support Groups And The Variety Of Services Available Through Local Programs. “As the State’s leading law enforcement agency, we have been instrumental in development of law enforcement protocols and training curriculum and have worked with prosecutors and courts to identify barriers. There are many barriers to be addressed. They include safety for domestic violence victims and accountability for their offenders. Safety is enhanced when individuals have access to hotlines, shelters, support groups and the variety of services available through local programs.” [Senate Finance Committee Minutes, 3/9/09]
  • Nevada Legislature Passed SB 14 And Republican Gov. Jim Gibbons Signed The Bill Into Law In May 2009.  [SB 14, Nevada Legislative Counsel Bureau, Legislative History]

Nevada Received About $1.25 Million For STOP Officer Training And Nearly $250,000 For Sexual Assault Victim Service Providers.In February 2014, Cortez Masto press release stated, “Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto announces the awarding of $1,265,124 in Services Training Officers Prosecution (STOP) Violence Against Women Formula Grant funding and $247,954 in Sexual Assault Service Provider Formula Grant funding (SASP) for Calendar Year 2014. ‘We are excited to financially back the agencies that do so much for our community and provide services to victims of sexual and domestic violence,’ said Masto. Forty-seven agencies received grant awards to fund services provided to victims of sexual and domestic violence, as well as law enforcement and prosecution efforts to combat domestic violence and court compliance projects throughout Nev. A list of the STOP and SASP grantees is available on our website, ag.nv.gov.” [Nevada Attorney General press release, 2/14/14]

AG Cortez Masto’s Office Received $167,000 Grant From Sexual Assault Service Providers Program. “The Department of Justice has awarded the Nevada Attorney general’s Office a $167,371 grant from the Sexual Assault Service Providers grant Program (SASP.) This is the second grant the Nevada Attorney general’s Office has received for SASP. SASP directs grant dollars to States and Territories to assist in supporting rape crisis centers and other nonprofit, nongovernmental organizations that provide core services, direct intervention and related assistance to victims of sexual assault. ‘These grant dollars are directed to those organizations and agencies dealing with victims of sexual assault,’ said Attorney general Catherine Cortez Masto. ‘These vital services are often underfunded and the Federal dollars will help these organizations in their important work.’ SASP is the first Federal funding stream solely dedicated to the provision of direct intervention and related assistance for victims of sexual assault. Five funding streams are directed toward States and Territories; tribes; state sexual assault coalitions; tribal sexual assault coalitions; and culturally specific organizations.” [Comstock Chronicle, 11/5/10]

Cortez Masto Awarded Funds To Domestic Violence And Abuse Crisis Centers Across The State. “In September the Office of the Attorney general awarded funds from the initial 2009 SASP grant of $239,352 to Nye County’s no to Abuse; Washoe County’s HAWC Community Health Center; Clark County’s Community Counseling Center of Southern Nevada and The Shade Tree; Humboldt County’s Winnemucca Domestic Violence Shelter; and the Family Support Council of Douglas County. Other agencies that will also receive funds from this initial grant beginning January 2011 are the Crisis Call Center, the Rape Crisis Center, the Domestic Violence Intervention of Churchill County and AlIVE of Lyon County. Solicitation for next year’s cycle of SASP subgrant applications which will reflect the $167,371 funding will be advertised in late 2011 with awards to be granted for 2012. Nevada’s SASP grant awards will be administered and overseen by the Office of the Attorney general.” [Comstock Chronicle, 11/5/10]

Headline: Associated Press: “NV Gets Nearly $1.5M Violence Against Women Grant.” [Associated Press, 10/27/10]

AG Cortez Masto’s Office Received $1.5 Million STOP Violence Against Women Grant For Law Enforcement, Prosecution, Victim Services And Courts. “The Nevada state attorney general’s office says it has received a nearly $1.5 million federal Justice Department grant for STOP Violence Against Women programs. Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto said in a statement that sub-grants will be awarded by the end of the year in categories including law enforcement, prosecution, victim services and courts. Federal pass-through grants to the states were authorized by Congress in the Violence Against Women Act of 2005. Masto says the program aims to identify and support programs to reduce violent crimes against women and to bolster services for victims. Recipients are required to submit financial, administrative and program reports to the government to maintain grant funding.” [Associated Press, 10/27/10]

Headline: Associated Press: “Nev. Agencies Get $1.2M For Anti-Violence Programs.” [Associated Press, 6/30/09]

AG Cortez Masto Allotted $1.2 Million In Recovery Act Funds To STOP Violence Against Women Programs. “More than two dozen agencies across Nevada will receive more than $1.2 million for programs to reduce violence against women. Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto said Tuesday the money under the Recovery Act STOP violence Against Women grant program will create or retain the equivalent of 17.5 full-time positions in 28 agencies in the state. Nevada has been allotted economic stimulus funds for programs that meet federal and state objectives of the grant program. The attorney general’s office will administer the grant money to Nevada programs. The STOP Violence Against Women Program encourages the development of ways to combat violent crimes against women.” [Associated Press, 6/30/09]

FACT: CORTEZ MASTO STOP GRANT FUNDED SPARKS PROSECUTION OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND DUIs

AG Cortez Masto Announced $12,000 STOP Grant For Sparks City Attorney Office Victim Advocate Program To Support Prosecution Of Domestic Violence And DUIs. “Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto will formally announce the award of $12,000 to the Victim Advocate’s program for the Sparks City Attorney’s Office at 3 p.m. Friday in Sparks City Council chambers at 745 4th St. The award is part of the Attorney General’s S.T.O.P. (Service, Training, Officers, Prosecution) Grant Program, intended to provide support and recognition to Nevada’s victims of domestic violence, as well as assisting in the prosecution of those who commit crimes of domestic violence. The S.T.O.P. Grant is part of the Sparks city attorney’s efforts to combat recent budget cuts by securing alternate funding sources to support the city’s prosecution of domestic violence crimes and DUIs. ‘Our successful prosecution of domestic violence crimes is three times higher than the national average. I refuse to allow this extremely effective program from being lost because of budget cuts,’ Sparks City Attorney Chet Adams said.” [Reno Gazette-Journal, 8/7/08]

FACT: CORTEZ MASTO VAWA GRANT FUNDED PROSECUTOR FOR NYE COUNTY

Headline: Pahrump Valley Times: “New County Prosecutor On Loan From AG’s Office.” [Pahrump Valley Times, 9/7/11]

Cortez Masto Loaned Prosecutor To Nye County To Combat Domestic And Sexual Assault Cases With VAWA Grant. “The Nye County District Attorney’s Office welcomed a new prosecutor into the fold. The addition helps ease the caseload of the office’s already stretched staff. Deputy Attorney General Ross Armstrong will serve as a tri-county prosecutor in Nye, Mineral and Esmeralda counties. Nye County District Attorney Brian Kunzi said Armstrong’s tenure is being funded by a grant. ‘The attorney general actually has a grant called the ‘Violence Against Women Act,’’ he said, referring to the program that was used to bring in Armstrong. […] In a press release, Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto said prosecuting domestic and sexual assault cases is a huge priority in Nevada. ‘The goal of this project is to deliver the message to potential perpetrators in Esmeralda, Mineral and Nye counties that domestic violence and sexual assault will not be tolerated,’ she said.” [Pahrump Valley Times, 9/7/11]

FACT: CORTEZ MASTO SOUGHT TO HELP FIND ELKO LAWYERS TO FIGHT DOMESTIC ABUSE

Headline: Associated Press: “AG Hears Of Elko Pro Bono Divorce Lawyer Shortage.” [Associated Press, 7/16/10]

AG Cortez Masto Said She Would Help Find Family Practice Lawyers To Help Elko Victims Of Abusive Husbands. “Nevada state Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto says she’ll help try to find family practice lawyers in northeast Nevada willing to donate time to help domestic violence victims divorce abusive husbands. Masto said Thursday during a Nevada Council for the Prevention of Domestic Violence meeting in Elko that the need for lawyers to help victims should be brought up at a family law conference. Elko-based Committee Against Domestic Violence staff member Pam Lansford told the panel there aren’t any pro bono divorce attorneys in Elko County willing to work free or on sliding fee scale. Lansford says stay-at-home mothers are often at a disadvantage in divorces because they don’t have money, while abusive husbands who work can hire lawyers.” [Associated Press, 7/16/10]

Headline: Elko Daily Free Press: “Victims Need Affordable Lawyers: AG Will Look Into Attorney Issue In Elko.” [Elko Daily Free Press, 7/15/10]

AG Cortez Masto Planned To Find Solution To Need For Elko Lawyers To Fight Domestic Abuse. “Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto said Thursday she plans to look for a solution to Elko’s lack of family practice lawyers willing to help domestic violence victims divorce their abusers. ‘This was the first time I had heard about the lack of family law attorneys. I will reach out to the family section of the state bar,’ she said after chairing a meeting in Elko on domestic violence. She said the Nevada Council for the Prevention of Domestic Violence comes to rural communities once a year to hear about their issues, which usually center on lack of funding and lack of professionals. ‘Once we know about issues, we can find solutions,’ Cortez Masto said.” [Elko Daily Free Press, 7/15/10]

FACT: CORTEZ MASTO’S OFFICE FUNDED WEST WENDOVER VICTIM ADVOCATE

Cortez Masto’s AG Office Provided $46,000 Per Year Grant To West Wendover Victim Advocate. “The council also held a town meeting Wednesday in West Wendover, and Cortez Masto said there was a good turnout. Kareen Prentice, domestic violence ombudsman for the attorney general’s office, said West Wendover is receiving a grant for a victim advocate. The grant is $46,900 a year for two years. Along other lines, the council agreed Thursday to seek legislation to change the law creating the council to state that its focus covers sexual assault, as well as domestic violence. ‘We’re just adding what we already do,’ Cortez Masto said.” [Elko Daily Free Press, 7/15/10]

FACT: CORTEZ MASTO’S OFFICE DEVELOPED DOMESTIC VIOLENCE TRAINING PROGRAM FOR LAW ENFORCEMENT

AG Cortez Masto’s Office Developed Training Program To Help Police Officers Investigate Domestic Violence Offenses. “Nevada has developed a training program to help officers investigate domestic violence offenses. Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto said the training program, which will be distributed to law enforcement agencies across the state, is one of two new programs Nevada has begun to provide more assistance to victims of domestic violence. One program will assist law enforcement with training, and the other will help Nevada prosecutors in handling domestic violence cases. The key is coordination among law enforcement, prosecutors, victim advocates and treatment providers to help the victims and stop the cycle of violence, said the attorney general. The Attorney General’s Office will distribute 300 training disks to law enforcement agencies in Nevada The attorney general and the Nevada Commission on Peace Officers’ Standards and Training developed the CD, entitled ‘Domestic Violence & Elder Abuse Investigations.’” [Crime Control Digest, 10/26/07]

Headline: Associated Press: “Nevada Official Unveils Programs To Fight Domestic Abuse.” [Associated Press, 10/5/07]

Cortez Masto’s AG Office Produced Training Programs For Law Enforcement And Prosecutors Handling Domestic Violence Cases.“Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto announced two new programs aimed at helping domestic violence victims in Nevada, which leads the nation in the number of domestic violence deaths per capita in 2005. Cortez Masto said Thursday that one program will assist law enforcement with training and that the other will help Nevada prosecutors in handling domestic violence cases. ‘We should be doing so much more and so much better for Nevada’s families,’ Cortez Masto said, adding that the key is coordination among law enforcement, prosecutors, victim advocates and treatment providers. Law enforcement will be helped with an interactive training CD called ‘Domestic Violence & Elder Abuse Investigations.’ The CD was put together by the attorney general’s office, the Nevada Commission on Peace Officers’ Standards Training, or POST, and various agencies and groups within the city of Henderson. The 300 training discs will be used by more than 16,000 law enforcement officials across the state.” [Associated Press, 10/5/07]

Voiceover: Catherine Cortez Masto couldn’t keep us safe in Nevada, why would we trust her to do it in Washington?

 

FACT: AS ATTORNEY GENERAL, CORTEZ MASTO WAS THE LEADING FORCE THAT PASSED TOUGH LAWS THAT INCREASED PRISON TIME FOR PIMPS AND PREDATORS

AG Cortez Masto Sponsored And Pushed For Legislation To Combat Child Sex Trafficking In Nevada. According to an article by Alex Pompliano of the Nevada Media Alliance, “Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto and other supports of the bill will join Sandoval as he signs AB67 into law. The bill establishes the crime of sex trafficking of children and adults, and makes victims eligible for state assistance and allows them to sue their traffickers. By doing so, the bill holds pimps accountable and protects the victims of sex trafficking. Cortez Masto, a primary proponent of the bill, says bills passed this year by the Legislature will serve as a springboard for more anti-trafficking measures in future years.” [Carson Now, 6/6/13]

Las Vegas Sun: Cortez Masto Championed Law That Increased Penalties For Sex Trafficking Law As It Was Working Its Way Through The Legislature. “The new law ups the penalty for sex trafficking to put it on the same level as the state’s sexual assault laws, disallows probation for people convicted of sex trafficking, allows courts to order those convicted to pay restitution to victims and requires a person convicted of sex trafficking register as a Tier 1 sex offender, among other provisions. […] Masto championed the bill while it was working its way through the Legislature. The law went into effect in July. In the news release about the indictment, Masto said her office will use every law enforcement tool available to prosecute sex trafficking cases to the fullest extent of the law.” [Las Vegas Sun, 11/22/13]

AG Cortez Masto’s Involvement With The Sex Trafficking Legislation “Marked A Turning Point” As A Cortez Masto Aide Pulled Together AB 67 Toughening Penalties On Pimps As An Omnibus Bill. “This event marked a turning point. The huge turnout, which included people from various backgrounds and both political parties, indicated that a serious effort to combat child sex trafficking was not only the right thing to do; it might also be politically feasible. Attorney General Masto assigned her top aide, Michon Martin, to scour other states for model legislation, then pulled together a task force that drafted a groundbreaking omnibus bill—Assembly Bill 67, which defined sex trafficking in Nevada as a crime, sharply ramped up penalties for pimps, gave law enforcement new resources for tracking and prosecuting offenders, and redefined children working in the sex trade as victims rather than as criminals.” [Commonweal Magazine,9/9/15]

After A Full-Scale Lobbying Effort, Anti-Sex Trafficking Bill Passed Unanimously On The Last Day Of The Legislation Session In 2013. “NCG leaders took their case to anyone who would listen. They met with their legislators, key committee heads, prominent gaming-industry executives, local public officials, and key social service agencies like the Salvation Army. They spoke to reporters, sent thousands of emails and postcards, and worked the phones. Finally, they dispatched busloads of committed activists to the state capital, Carson City, to press for passage of AB 67. On the last day of the legislative session, the bill passed unanimously. For once, the voices of ordinary Nevada citizens had prevailed.” [Commonweal Magazine, 9/9/15]

Exploitation Of Children Became Class A Felony With Maximum Life Sentence, Trafficking An Adult Became Class B Felony With Three-To-10-Year Sentence. “The passage of Assembly Bill 67 will help law enforcement, Chalmers said. ‘I am extremely proud of the collaborative work of supporters, stakeholders and elected officials that went into this law,’ Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto, sponsor of the bill, said in an email. ‘I remain committed to the fight against this rapidly growing crime that deprives children and young adults of their human rights.’ The new law, which went into effect on July 1, made trafficking an adult a category B felony that carries a three-to-10-year sentence. Exploitation of a child is now a category A felony that carries a maximum life sentence. Parole eligibility for those cases depends on how young the victim is.” [Reno Gazette-Journal, 7/21/13]

Nevada Bureau Of Criminal Justice Head: Before AB 67 Traffickers Were Fined And Released. With The New Law, Offenders Will Face Life In Prison. “Sex trafficking is a real problem throughout Nevada, said Russell Smith, chief deputy attorney for the Nevada Bureau of Criminal Justice. ‘As long as there is a demand, there will be a supply,’ Smith told the Nevada Community Prevention Coalition (NCPC) this week while discussing human and sex trafficking. […] Assembly Bill 67, passed last year, defines sex trafficking as when a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud or coercion, in which the person performing the sex act is younger than 18. The bill also increased the penalties for such crimes. Smith said before that bill became law, offenders were usually sentenced to take a sex trafficking class, maybe charged a fine and then released. With the new law in place, offenders will face life in prison with a chance of parole after various lengths of time.” [The Spectrum, 1/22/14]

FACT: CORTEZ MASTO SPONSORED AND PASSED BILL TO INCREASE PENALITIES ON STRANGULATION

Headline: Las Vegas Sun: “18 Arrested Under New Domestic Violence Law.” [Las Vegas Sun, 7/23/09]

Cortez Masto Fought For AB 164 To Increase Domestic Violence Penalties On Strangulation. “Metro Police have wasted no time enforcing a new law that went into effect July 1 that increases certain domestic violence penalties. Assembly Bill 164, approved by the Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Jim Gibbons on May 6, revised a battery charge involving strangulation. […] The bill was introduced in the Assembly on Feb. 12 and passed both houses of the Legislature on May 1. Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto supported the bill. Assemblyman William Horne, D-LV, chief sponsor of the bill, said he was approached by the attorney general to introduce the enhanced punishment under domestic violence statutes.” [Las Vegas Sun, 7/23/09]

  • Nevada Legislature Passed AB 164 And Republican Gov. Jim Gibbons Signed The Bill Into Law In May 2009.  [AB 164, Nevada Legislative Counsel Bureau, Legislative History]
  • Since The Law Went Into Effect, 18 People Have Been Arrested Based On The New Charge. “Since the law went into effect, Metro Police Lt. Chris Carroll, of the Metro Police Domestic Violence Detail, said 18 people have been arrested based on the new charge. The bill amended Nevada revised statutes to increase penalties for domestic violence and battery involving strangulation, making it a category C felony, Carroll said. The maximum fine for each charge is $15,000.” [Las Vegas Sun, 7/23/09]

FACT: CORTEZ MASTO EXPANDED THE SEX OFFENDER REGISTRY AND SUCCESSFUL DEFENDED THE LAW FROM LEGAL CHALLENGES

Pahrump Valley Times: Cortez Masto’s Work Has Resulted In New Laws Strengthening The Registration And Notification Requirements Of Convicted Sex Offenders.” “Masto’s work has resulted in new laws strengthening the registration and notification requirements of convicted sex offenders and preventing a person from luring someone believed to be a child. During her presentation the attorney general told the students how her office works to get the ‘bad guys’ each day.” [Pahrump Valley Times, 3/21/14]

Cortez Masto’s Bill Changed Risk Classification And Tiered Sex Offenders Based On Their Risk To Re-Offend. “Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto, whose office introduced the Walsh Act to Nevada’s Legislature in 2007and has been defending it in court ever since, said it’s up to the agencies that would be affected to figure out the costs. […] The risk of each to re-offend has to be reconsidered and reclassified. Nevada sex offenders are classified by tiers — the higher the tier, the higher the risk to re-offend. The higher the risk, the closer a sex offender is supposed to be monitored by parole and probation officials.” [Las Vegas Sun, 2/15/09]

Las Vegas Sun: AG Cortez Masto Introduced The Walsh Act And Defended It From Legal Challenges. “Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto, whose office introduced the Walsh Act to Nevada’s Legislature in 2007 and has been defending it in court ever since, said it’s up to the agencies that would be affected to figure out the costs. But representatives of these agencies said nobody is running numbers while the law is stalled in court.” [Las Vegas Sun, 2/15/09]

  •  Cortez Masto Applauded Court Ruling That Upheld Rigorous Sex Offender Reporting Requirements. “In 2008, U.S. District Judge James C. Mahan issued an injunction preventing the law from being applied retroactively. At the time, he expressed concerns that if Nevada posted its list of nearly 5,000 people convicted of sex crimes since 1956, there would be no way to restore their privacy if the law was later found to be flawed. The attorney general’s office appealed, and on Friday, Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto applauded the 9th Circuit’s ruling. ‘It has been a long and necessary fight,’ Mast said in a statement. ‘It creates a system that requires sex offenders to be subject to rigorous reporting requirements. We owe it to our community to do our best to protect our citizens, particularly those most vulnerable, from adult sex offenders.’” [Associated Press, 2/11/12]
  • Cortez Masto Spokesman: Previous Court Rulings Have Upheld Nevada Law Requiring Sex Offenders To Be Retroactively Classified. “A spokeswoman for Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto’s office pointed to previous court rulings, including one from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco that upheld Nevada’s law requiring sex offenders to be retroactively classified according to their crimes, not by their risk of reoffending. ‘The Nevada Supreme Court entered a stay of enforcement so they have an opportunity to review this law and determine whether it should be implemented,’ spokeswoman Jennifer Lopez said.” [Las Vegas Review-Journal, 2/4/14]
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REALITY: WASHINGTON REPUBLICANS ARE SPENDING MILLIONS TO DISTRACT FROM CONGRESSMAN HECK’S SUPPORT OF DONALD TRUMP…

Outside Groups Linked To The Koch Brothers And Mitch McConnell Have Already Spent Nearly $10 Million On Heck. “In the race to replace retiring Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.), groups supporting Rep. Joe Heck (R-NV) spent $9.8 million compared to $2.5 million for those in support of former Lt. Gov. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV). […]The top spenders in all of these races are the same. On the Republican side, support comes from groups connected to the billionaire Koch brothers ― including Freedom Partners Action Fund, Americans for Prosperity and Concerned Veterans for America ― as well as from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and One Nation, a nonprofit group connected to both Karl Rove and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY).” [Huffington Post, 7/13/16]

Headline: Las Vegas Review-Journal: “Burst Of ‘Dark Money’ To Boost Heck On TV, Radio.” [Las Vegas Review-Journal, 10/22/15]

Las Vegas Review-Journal: Heck Received A “Big Boost” With Ads From A Dark Money Groups. “U.S. Senate candidate and Rep. Joe Heck is getting a big boost from One Nation, a nonprofit group with ties to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-KY. One Nation has launched a $792,000 ad buy that will run on Las Vegas TV and radio stations. The 30-second clip will run for 20 days, the group said in a press release Thursday.” [Las Vegas Review-Journal, 10/22/15]

Heck: “I Have High Hopes That We Will See Donald Trump Become The Next President.” “‘I have high hopes that we will see Donald Trump become the next president,’ he said. ‘Though I don’t necessarily agree with how he talks about women and minorities and all of his policy positions, but if he wants to make America great again by bringing jobs back to America, then I am willing to help him achieve those goals and hold him accountable. And as the next U.S. senator from Nevada, I will make sure I stand as a check against anything that is not in our best interest.’” [Pahrump Valley Times, 6/1/16]

KTNV: Heck “Swatted Away Suggestions” That Trump’s Rhetoric And Immigration Policies Would Hurt His Chances.“Heck also swatted away suggestions that Republican presidential front runner Donald Trump’s divisive rhetoric and plans to deport 11 million undocumented migrants would hurt his chances, saying that he won his demographically diverse congressional district by increasingly larger margins over the last three elections.” [KTNV,3/14/16]

Heck On Donald Trump: “He’s Out There Talking About What He Needs To Talk About To Run For President.” “So, what does Congressman Joe Heck, Nevada’s Republican candidate for US Senate, think of the guy at the top of the GOP presidential polls? ‘I don’t talk about Donald,’ Heck told News 3 after a morning event put on by the Las Vegas Metro Chamber of Commerce. ‘He’s out there talking about what he needs to talk about to run for President,’ Heck added after ‘Eggs and Issues,’ the Chamber’s breakfast debrief with local newsmakers. The Thursday event was held at Vdara in CityCenter.” [KSNV,8/27/15]

… AND HIS RECORD OF VOTING NINE TIMES OUT OF TEN WITH HIS PARTY BOSSES

Heck Has Voted With His Party 90 Percent Of The Time. According to CQ, Heck voted with his party 87% of the time in 2014, 93% of the time in 2013, 89% of the time in 2012, and 90% of the time in 2011. [CQ Vote Studies, Accessed 5/18/16]

Roll Call: Heck Was On The “Good Side” Of The More Conservative Wing Of The Republican Party. “Heck has managed to stay on the good side of the more conservative wing of the Republican Party, which could help him fend off a serious primary challenge from the right. Republicans hope to avoid the situation they faced in 2010, when a crowded, messy primary resulted in the nomination of Sharron Angle, a flawed and gaffe-prone candidate who lost what was seen as a winnable race against Reid.” [Roll Call, 5/11/15]

MSNBC: Heck Voted For A “Far Right” Budget Scraping Medicare, Opposed Minimum Wage Increases, Was A Staunch Opponent Of Reproductive Rights, And Called Social Security A Pyramid Scheme. “Republican Rep. Joe Heck is a prominent U.S. Senate candidate in Nevada, and at first blush, the conservative congressman, running for an open seat, appears to be well positioned. Nevada is a fast-growing swing state with a diverse population, and Heck has previously won with fairly broad support. But it won’t be easy. Heck voted for a far-right budget plan that tried to scrap Medicare; he’s opposed minimum-wage increases; the GOP candidate is a staunch opponent of reproductive rights; and he’s even condemned Social Security as a pyramid scheme.” [MSNBC, 9/2/15]