Sen. Harry Reid sat down with me Monday to tell me my recent column exonerating Rep. Joe Heck for holding up immigration reform made him sick. He repeated the mantra during a Tuesday interview with anchor Jeff Gillen on KSNV Channel 3, saying it “galls him” to hear people say Heck supports comprehensive immigration reform.
Reid’s disdain for Heck got me thinking: Is the senator concerned that the Republican congressman might run against him in 2016, when Reid seat is up?
Reid, a former boxer, essentially said bring it on.
“Joe Heck compared to the people I’ve run against over the years, is a lightweight. Let him run,” Reid said. “He’s a lightweight compared to all of them.”
The list of Reid’s opponents in his Senate career includes distinguished and undistinguished alike: There was Democrat-turned-Republican former Rep. Jim Santini in 1986 (50 percent to 44.5 percent); Demar Dahl in 1986 (51 percent to 40 percent); John Ensign in 1998 (47.8 percent to 47.7 percent, Reid’s closest race ever); and Richard Ziser in 2004 (61 percent to 35 percent, Reid’s widest margin ever).
“How about Sharron Angle?” Reid added. “He’s a lightweight compared to her. Let him run.”
Reid defeated Angle 50 percent to 44.5 percent after a gaffe-ridden, mistake-prone Angle effort.
Asked for comment, Heck spokesman Greg Lemon replied simply, “Congressman Heck is focused on solutions, not politics right now. He’s focused on doing the job he was elected to do.”
Heck is facing Democratic challenger Erin Bilbray in the 3rd Congressional District next November.