'Deeply good man from Searchlight': Democratic leaders pay tribute to Harry Reid in Nevada

Reid is widely regarded as the most powerful and influential Nevada politician who turned the republican state into a democratic stronghold that has been blue in every presidential election since 2004.

“Without Harry, there would be no Affordable Care Act,” Obama said, admitting that Reid’s family grew up without health insurance.

“When Harry put everything he had into the ACA degree, he didn’t do that to create his own legacy,” he said. “He did it for the people at home and for families like his who needed someone to look after them.

The former president also remembered Reid as a fighter, both in his political career and as an amateur boxer.

“Hardness had forged a steel in Harry,” said Obama. “He has inherited a fighting spirit that explains his success in the boxing ring, even though it is clearly undersized.”

The two party leaders are a “damn good team,” said Obama. “I couldn’t have asked for a better, more loyal friend,” he added.

Biden spoke about Reid’s loyalty, dedication, and devotion as a public service while working with Reid while serving as Vice President during his tenure in the Senate.

Biden said the two were “real friends” despite their different origins and religions.

“Harry would always have your back … Harry had mine and he knew I had his,” Biden said.

Biden said Reid “led the Democratic faction not just by speaking but also by listening” extolling his sense of duty rather than wanting to be the center of attention.

“He was proof that America is nothing out of the ordinary,” said Biden. “He’s proof that normal Americans can have anything when you have half a chance.”

“No doubt about it,” added Biden. “Harry Reid is considered to be one of the greatest Senate majority leaders in United States history.”

Calling Reid his friend and mentor in the Senate, Schumer said the former majority leader was “unique” and spoke with his generosity and friendship.

“He was tough, a fighter to the core, but also one of the most compassionate people you can imagine.”

In her remarks, Pelosi said Reid was a “preeminent civil service titan” and praised him for his commitment to his constituents.

“He went out of his way to make sure the Nevadan voices were heard,” she said.

Pelosi said Reid would be remembered for his kindness to his co-workers, co-workers, and everyone he met at the Capitol.

“For his great legislative achievements, his most enduring public legacy will be that he was loved. A word that is not often used to describe political candidates … because he treated everyone with dignity and respect,” Pelosi said.

Republican Sens. Roy Blunt from Missouri and Richard Shelby from Alabama were also present. Vice President Kamala Harris was also there.

Reid’s roots come from the small town of Searchlight in southern Nevada. He eventually left the state to study at Southern Utah University and Utah State University, and then went to George Washington University to study law. He worked as a Capitol Police Officer while studying law before returning to Nevada to join the State Assembly.

Reid was elected to the House of Representatives in 1982 and won his Senate seat in 1986. He served for 30 years and became the longest serving Senator from Nevada when he retired in 2017. Reid leaves behind his 62-year-old wife, Landra, their five children and many grandchildren.

Harry and Landra’s eldest daughter Lana Reid Barringer spoke about her father’s generosity and devotion not only to the country but also to his family.

“He was always there for our family and took time for everything that was important to us,” she said.

Many of the speakers remembered Reid’s habit of abruptly hanging up phone calls. Reid’s son Leif said this was true but that the leader always took calls from his family.

“As busy as he was in the Senate talking to a head of state, whatever it was, my father always took our calls,” he said. “And he never made us feel busy, he didn’t have time to give us a moment to help us.”

President of Latter-day Saints, M. Russell Ballard, also spoke at the service.

Ballard said that Reid embodied the Bible verse Matthew 25:40 – “Verily, I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of my brothers and sisters, you did it for me.”

“Harry paid very little attention to those who were less fortunate, hungry, sick, and faced a range of challenges,” Ballard said.

Brandon Flowers of Las Vegas rock band The Killers played “Be Still” and “Home Means Nevada”. The Killers played at many of Reid’s campaign events, and Reid’s son Leif said The Killers were “the last musical request he ever made”.

Singer-songwriter Carole King also played her song “In the Name of Love”.

Reid died on December 28 at the age of 82 after a battle with pancreatic cancer.

After the funeral, Reid’s body will be transported to Washington, DC, where it will lie in the rotunda of the US Capitol on January 12th. Pelosi called the honor “an appropriate tribute to a historical, patriotic American”.

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