Posts Tagged ‘danny tarkanian’

LAS VEGAS, Nev. / Following a recent expose in the LAS VEGAS SUN that raises questions about a failed multi-million land deal Danny Tarkanian helped finance and how that failure squares with the image of a successful businessman he sells on the campaign trail, are new questions about how the Republican candidate for U.S. Senate managed to secure millions of dollars without ever having to meet with a single banker.

Government regulators shut down that savings and loan, La Jolla Bank, in February.

Your Politics Now asks whether there may be something else going because a bank does not typically loan millions of dollars to a man and his company and never ask to see him.

The land deal in question goes back to 2007, at the height of the building and real estate boom, and right before it went bust. Dignitary Downs, a resort for equestrians in Anza, Calif. was to include a hotel and jockey school. Tarkanian used his family’s company as collateral to borrow millions from the bank and then lent the money to the developer at a higher interest rate.

But the project failed when the developer ran out of money.

To this day, Tarkanian’s family company still owes $14.5 million. He’s suing the federal government to save his company’s land from foreclosure.

In the lawsuit, Tarkanian admits he signed the La Jolla Bank paperwork presented to him by a friend and business partner “without ever meeting, discussing or negotiating with anyone affiliated with La Jolla Bank.”

Industry experts wonder how Tarkanian could not have known that engaging in such a deal without ever meeting with the bank would be wrong and shady.

“This is pretty basic stuff that banks tend to want to meet the people they’re loaning millions of dollars to,” says James O’Sullivan, a retired banking executive now living in Colorado. “How could anyone not know that wasn’t right?”

O’Sullivan says Tarkanian should’ve questioned the apparent coziness between the bank and business associate. There is no information to date that would suggest Tarkanian had any direct connection to the bank.

“This, quite frankly, doesn’t pass the smell test for me. Him suing the federal government when he should never have signed the documents under such suspicious circumstances in the first place seems particularly strange,” says O’Sullivan.

Tarkanian is presenting himself as the only Republican candidate who can beat Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid in the general election.

But now with this scandal, some, like Joseph P. Smith of Carson City, wonder whether he’s just Reid wearing red.

“If we know about this now, I do worry about what I don’t know about him.”

According to a new poll conducted for the LAS VEGAS REVIEW JOURNAL and released today, Sue Lowden has the best chance of defeating Reid: Lowden would win 42 percent of the vote and Reid 39 percent.


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