Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Why Mitt Romney's Campaign Couldn't Give Their Favorite Nevadan a Shoutout

Yesterday, Mitt Romney's campaign bus finally arrived in Las Vegas. When the bus arrived at the famous "Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas" Sign, tourists gawked. When the bus arrived at a local Cardenas supermarket, shoppers raised eyebrows. And when Nevada's #1 Mitt Romney fan Joe Heck arrived on the bus, he made sure to get in front of the press corps and offer his "sage campaign advice".

Yet despite the Romney bus' arrival here in Las Vegas, there were no answers on the questions we're all asking about him. There was no mention of Bain Capital. And despite the bus arriving on the Las Vegas Strip, there was no mention of the man who's probably become the most important figure in Mitt Romney's campaign. Oh yes, I'm talking about Sheldon Adelson.

Think about it. The bus was just minutes away from The Venetian & The Palazzo. Adelson recently dropped $10 million in a pro-Romney Super PAC, then gave $5 million to Congressional Republican Super PACs. And Romney's campaign had nothing to say about their #1 money man?

Hmmm, I wonder why. I wonder why.

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There's a reason why Mitt Romney and other Republicans don't want to talk about how Sheldon Adelson makes his money. As we talked about yesterday, it messes with the image of them that they want us to see.

[Steve] Jacobs was fired in July 2010 from his role overseeing the Macau properties. He sued the companies and Adelson three months later.

In the lawsuit, he accuses the company and Adelson of breach of contract and of pushing him into illegal activity in Macau, a former Portugese colony near Hong Kong where Sands has established a strong business presence. The company owns the Venetian Macao and Sands Macao casino resorts, the Plaza Macao hotel, restaurant and shopping complex and the newly opened Sands Cotai Central resort with three hotels and two casinos.

In documents revealed Thursday —including a sworn seven-page declaration that Jacobs submitted along with a summary from his attorneys of problems obtaining documents from Sands —Jacobs describes an effort he launched after arriving in Macau in May 2009 to rid the casino floor of "loan sharks and prostitution."

"This project was met with concern as (company) senior executives informed me that the prior prostitution strategy had been personally approved by Adelson," Jacobs said in the documents.

In his court filing, Jacobs alleges other documents that haven't been turned over include records of misuse of "blue card' work permits and the hiring of illegal workers in Macau; emails and records of Adelson controlling a "Chairman's Club" allowing favored members, including known or suspected organized crime figures, exclusive access to Sands China's most luxurious accommodations; and email requests from Adelson to a Macau lawmaker who Jacobs said was hired as outside counsel after Jacobs was fired.

If you want to know even more of what's been going on behind the scenes at Sheldon Adelson's Macau casinos, I highly recommend this New Yorker article. It will really help explain why these Republican politicians (and their Super PACs) love to take all those big checks from Sheldon Adelson... Yet are afraid to be seen too close to him. Again, the more we know about Adelson's business, the more hypocritical these "family values, America loving, communism hating, tea party" Republicans look for taking Adelson's money.

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