(CNN) - Major Republican donor and casino mogul Sheldon Adelson and his wife did not push for a special Saturday evening Nevada Republican caucus for orthodox Jews, a spokesman for Adelson said in a note to reporters Monday evening.
“In short, they had no involvement,” spokesman Ron Reese said in his memo.
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Last week, the Clark County Republican Party approved an evening caucus for Jews and Seventh-day Adventists. Speculation soon swirled that Adelson, a high-profile Jew and strong supporter of Newt Gingrich, was involved in pushing for the special caucus.
Reese, however, said the decision came after an orthodox member of the Jewish community brought up the issue at a board meeting of the Adelson Educational Campus, a private school spanning kindergarten through high school.
The voter said he would not be able to participate in the caucuses if they were only held during the day, which is the Jewish Sabbath. Orthodox Jews do not drive on the Sabbath, and the only activities they are supposed to take part in are attending religious services.
While Adelson and his wife, Dr. Miriam Adelson, were at the same board meeting as the voter, Reese noted: “For the record, Mr. and Dr. Adelson are not orthodox, thus they could participate in the caucus regardless of time or location.”
“The venue was selected after the person who originally started this process contacted the head master of the Adelson Educational Campus to ask about possible availability. The head master said it would not be a problem as the Campus hosts a variety of community and civic functions,” Reese said. “At no point did either Mr. Adelson or Dr. Adelson provide any input into the process or intervene in any way. They were informed by the head master of the school after the final decision had been agreed upon by the Clark County GOP.”
Adelson and his wife are major Nevada Republican benefactors and have become key backers of Gingrich’s presidential bid, giving this month a combined $10 million to the Super PAC supporting his candidacy, Winning Our Future.
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