Schwartz to Laxalt: Resign and drop out of governor's race

Nevada State Treasurer Dan Schwartz, a candidate for Nevada governor. KOLO photo.
Nevada State Treasurer Dan Schwartz, a candidate for Nevada governor. KOLO photo.(KOLO)
Published: Dec. 15, 2017 at 7:15 PM PST
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Damning allegations have been made in the run to be Nevada's Governor. One Republican candidate is calling for Attorney General Adam Laxalt to not only suspend his campaign, but to quit his position as the state's highest law enforcement officer.

Candidate Dan Schwartz made media rounds Friday, calling for Attorney General Adam Laxalt to step down.

"We now have had three lapses where the Attorney General has confused his political ambitions with the offices of the state," Schwartz says.

He points to a local newspaper article in which Laxalt is heard asking A.G. staff to deal with a campaign issue, which could be illegal. But KOLO 8 News Now is not aware of any legal investigation.

Schwartz also cites a second recording showing a possible conflict of interest as Attorney General Adam Laxalt gives legal advice to Chairman Burnett of the Nevada Gaming Control Board. The FBI determined Laxalt did not break the law.

The third incident Schwartz cites:

"He phoned the Mayor of Reno and asked her not to sue Pfizer and Purdue Pharma."

Reno Mayor Hilary Schieve says Laxalt did ask her to not sue the opioid manufacturers. While that is not a crime, and is allowed with his position, Schieve says more than 100 other cities are suing opioid manufacturers in separate suits from the state, "In most states the A.G. works in conjunction with (cities) just as a letter of support."

Schwartz alleges Laxalt was motivated to put pressure on Schieve because of money. "It turns out he has taken over ten thousand dollars in donations from both of these organizations."

We have found a Pfizer report showing the company's donations to Nevadans. It did donate $2,500 to Laxalt just last year. He gave similar amounts last year to Senator Dean Heller, State Majority Leader Aaron Ford and Assistant Majority Leader Kelvin Atkinson.

"But do the people of Nevada really want a Governor who is motivated by political contributions?" Schwartz asks.

We reached out to Laxalt's campaign, which provided this response:

"It's late on Friday afternoon. Shouldn't Dan be back at his San Francisco weekend home by now? This is a laughable political stunt from someone who has been unable to gain traction after campaigning for months."

While Laxalt and Schwartz have both declared for the governor's office, candidates cannot file for the election until March.