Harry Reid has always been a friend to Nevada’s African American Community, and as Nevada families struggle in these difficult times, his leadership is needed now more than ever. Senator Reid is continuing to fight for Nevada's African-American community by ensuring we fix our broken health care system and by leveraging every ounce of his clout as Majority Leader to alleviate the housing crisis as well as continue the fight for fair and open opportunities for economic development.
As Majority Leader, Senator Reid has been working to bring relief to Nevada families struggling in the economic crisis.
He led the Senate in passing the Recovery Act, which will bring more than $1.6 billion to the state and create or save roughly 34,000 Nevada jobs over the next two years. The Recovery Act included vital funding to extend and expand unemployment benefits and is helping laid-off workers keep their health care by partially subsidizing COBRA premiums. Furthermore, the Recovery Act is helping Nevadans disproportionately hurt by the economic crisis by investing in neighborhood revitalization, job training programs, support for small businesses and energy and infrastructure projects that will create jobs and help make Nevada an even better place to live, work and raise a family along the way.
Senator Reid has also been working hard to ease the burden on Nevada’s families by cutting their taxes.
The Recovery Act put more than $500 million back into the hands of roughly 1 million Nevadans. He also led the Senate in passing a budget that extended tax cuts for working and middle class families like the child tax credit, the ten percent income tax bracket and marriage penalty relief. He also made sure Nevadans will get a fair shake under federal income tax laws by making permanent the sales tax deduction for states like Nevada that don’t have an income tax. Reid also used his clout as Majority Leader to help save City Center, which generated more than $700 million for around 200 minority-owned businesses.
With Nevada experiencing some of the highest foreclosure rates in the country, Senator Reid has been fighting to help struggling families stay in their homes.
In 2009, Reid led the Senate in passing legislation that makes it easier for struggling families to adjust or refinance their mortgages to a more affordable rate so they can stay in their homes. The bill also protects renters from unfair evictions because their landlord couldn’t or just wasn’t making his or her mortgage payments. Senator Reid is still fighting to make it easier for families struggling to stay in their homes by working to pass legislation that would allow bankruptcy judges to renegotiate mortgages on a family’s primary residence, a protection millionaires already have on vacation homes, investment property and even their yachts.
Senator Reid knows fighting to solve the nation’s health care crisis, which disproportionately impacts Nevada’s African American community.
Last year, Reid led the Senate in passing an historic expansion of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, which will make as many as 37,000 additional Nevada children eligible for health insurance their families couldn’t otherwise afford. Reid is also fighting in the Senate right now to finally pass health insurance reform that will give all Nevadans access to quality affordable health insurance while lowering costs in the health care system and improving the quality of care. Under his bill, more than 500,000 Nevadans who don’t have coverage will be able to get it, around 24,000 small businesses will receive a tax credit to make providing health insurance more affordable and Nevada’s 328,000 Medicare recipients will be able to receive free preventive care, with 58,000 low- and middle-income seniors seeing significantly reduced prices for certain prescription drugs.
Senator Reid has also been a staunch ally in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
Reid has voted consistently for funding to fight this deadly disease and to help treat those who live with it, from 1990 when he voted for the Ryan White CARE Act to 2008 when he led the Senate in passing landmark legislation to expand funding for the global fight against HIV/AIDS and other deadly diseases.
Senator Reid has fought to make college more affordable for Nevada’s young people.
The Recovery Act included a $500 increase in the Pell Grant award and a $2,500 tax credit to help make tuition and other higher education expenses more affordable. He also led the Senate in passing the College Cost Reduction Act, the largest expansion of college aid since the GI Bill. The bill included increases in direct aid, a reduction in interest rates on student loans for low-income students and caps on loan payments based on a graduate’s income.
Senator Reid has promoted diversity both in Nevada and around the country.
Reid was part of efforts to integrate the Las Vegas strip and the gaming industry. He’s backed affirmative action in federal contracting and sharply criticized the Supreme Court when they turned Brown v. Board on its head and ruled against cities’ efforts to diversify their schools. He has also taken a leadership role on Capitol Hill, partnering with Howard University to form an internship program that encourages young people of color to get interested in public service and started the Senate Democratic Diversity Initiative to combat what has been called a “dearth of diversity” in Congressional staffs. Reid also recommended the nomination of the first African-American and first woman to serve on the federal bench in Nevada and the first African-American woman to serve on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
Senator Reid is proud to have stood with NAACP and other civil rights organizations during his time in Congress. For the last ten years, Reid has consistently earned “A” ratings from the NAACP. Most recently, Reid stood with the NAACP in supporting the renewal of the Voting Rights Act and leading the Senate in passing the Emmett Till Unsolved Civil Rights Crime Act, which provides funding for the Justice Department to investigate and prosecute still-unsolved civil rights crimes.