Controversial Nevada Councilwoman, and second amendment enthusiast, Michele Fiore – has dropped her gubernatorial bid to run for State Treasurer. Just a week prior, Fiore was asking for financial support from voters and vowing that, as Governor, she would stop the Democrats’ “agenda.”
As your next Governor, I am ready to stop the Democrat agenda that has continually abandoned our communities. Will you show your support for a real Conservative leader in Nevada? Chip-in at https://t.co/UjPorzQI4P
— Councilwoman Michele Fiore (@VoteFiore) March 10, 2022
According to Nevada’s NBC affiliate, 3 News, Fiore had spent a little over $6,000 to run 62 ads in Palm Beach, with the hope of gaining Trump’s endorsement of her for Governor. But an overcrowded field — almost two dozen potentials are vying for the state’s top political post – and a conversation with former President Donald Trump’s team convinced Fiore to drop out and throw her hat in the less competitive race for State Treasurer instead. She’s not letting a little thing like an FBI investigation into campaign finance violations deter her.
Her campaign manager Rory McShane said in a phone call that Fiore had a talk with Donald Trump's team and decided that Nevada needed a conservative to run for treasurer. https://t.co/ByTfjQI3ed
— Jessica Hill (@jess_hillyeah) March 17, 2022
Fiore’s decades-long political career has had more than its fair share of controversy. Some would say, she’s better known for her actions outside the legislature than for anything she did in it. After a terrorist attack in Paris, she made inflammatory comments about Syrian refugees. According to the Las Vegas Sun, Fiore said this on a local radio show:
“I’m about to fly to Paris and shoot ’em in the head myself. I am not OK with Syrian refugees, I am not OK with terrorists. You know, I’m OK with putting them down, blacking them out, just put a piece of brass in their nocular cavity and end their miserable life. I’m good with that.”
Courting the public and inviting backlash, whenever she can.
The same year, Fiore posted a family Christmas picture, in which all but the smallest children were armed, including her five-year-old grandson, who was holding a pistol.
In 2014, political journalist Jon Ralston – contributing editor to Politico and editor of The Nevada Independent – reported on his online blog Ralston Reports that the then Assemblywoman had over $1 million in federal tax liens through the years. Fiore reportedly spent hundreds of thousands of dollars of campaign money on the ride-share company, Uber, and over $21,000 at Costco and Walmart. She also allegedly funneled $300,000 of campaign and PAC money into her own consulting firm, Politically Off The Wall, her magazine, Truth in Politics, and her daughter, Sheena Siegel’s event planning company.
In response to being called out by Ralston, Fiore tweeted this meme:
— Councilwoman Michele Fiore (@VoteFiore) March 31, 2016
Fiore has been connected to extremist groups. Counting insurrectionist pal and Trump crony, Roger Stone, amongst her friends, as well as Oath Keeper founder – and convicted Jan. 6th insurrectionist – Stewart Rhodes. In 2014, both Fiore and Rhodes showed support for anti-government Nevada rancher, Cliven Bundy. Bundy engaged in an armed stand-off with the federal government over grazing rights. Fiore was on hand to show her support. She was quoted as saying, “Don’t come here with guns and expect the American people not to fire back.”
According to political reporter Sarah Ashton-Cirillo, that same year Fiore took the Oath Keeper vow. Ashton-Cirillo shared a picture from Ammoland on the blog political.tips of Fiore and Rhodes that was entitled The Lady IS an Oath Keeper.
Two years later, Cliven’s sons Ammon and Ryan Bundy led an armed militia onto federal land – taking over the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Burns, Oregon. A standoff that began on January 2, 2016, lasted six weeks, leaving one man dead. LaVoy Finicum was killed by Oregon State Police. The remaining men refused to surrender unless two people were called – televangelist Franklin Graham…and Nevada Assemblywoman, Michele Fiore. Fiore traveled to Burns to negotiate the surrender of the remaining four men, telling one of them “the only way we’re going to able to write your story and write your books, is if you stay alive.” No one else was injured.
In 2020, Fiore resigned as Mayor Pro-Tem for comments she made at Clark County’s Republican Convention that were considered to be “racially charged” in the aftermath of George Floyd’s murder. Las Vegas resident Tanisha Carmichael spoke before Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman, testifying to the fears of being a Black mother and criticizing Fiore.
“What hurts my heart is that you can still sit next to Fiore who is someone that called Black Lives Matter a terrorist group, but in the same breath said that if a police officer pointed a gun at her, she would fire back,” Carmichael told the mayor.
Carmichael wasn’t the only one to criticize Fiore, prompting her to walk out of the hearing. The local Republican Party condemned the rhetoric and asked for Fiore to apologize.
The same month, former Congressional candidate Dan Rolle would file an FEC complaint against Fiore, alleging she used city resources to campaign for Donald Trump’s 2020 re-election campaign.
At the beginning of 2021, the FBI raided Fiore’s home based on a complaint from a former employee of Fiore’s, accusing the Councilwoman of using campaign funds for her personal use. Several agents showed up at the Fiore home in dark SUVs. Fiore could be seen taking boxes of documents to the government vehicles. Sarah Ashton-Cirillo, who campaigned for Fiore’s council seat, also turned over documents and evidence to the FBI.
Aston-Cirillo posted a video of Roger Stone decrying what he considers to be “baseless” allegations. In January 2022, Stone – in an interview with Alex Jones – said:
I reached out to Stone via text, Sunday morning, to ask about his support for Fiore, and if he believed the FBI investigation was warranted. His reply:
There are currently three other candidates in the race for State Treasurer: Democratic incumbent Zach Conine who narrowly escaped defeat by beating his Republican opponent, Bob Beers by only 6/10 of a percentage point in the last election; Las Vegas businessman, and fellow Republican, Manny Kess (sexist and vulgar tweets posted by Kess have recently surface); and Independent candidate, Margaret Hendrickson. Nevada is considered a swing state, with Republicans, Democrats, and Independents carrying an equal percentage of registered voters.
I reached out to Fiore via text, to ask about the Oath Keeper claims – no reply.
Apparently, Fiore’s controversial history, inflammatory, divisive, and oft-times violent rhetoric, allegations of financial improprieties, and connection to white nationalists, anti-government militias, and insurrectionists permanently hindered her chances of winning the Republican primary. We should all be grateful.
Follow Ty Ross on Twitter @cooltxchick