Rosen offers transcript in response to Heller ad in Nevada Senate race
July 19, 2018
LAS VEGAS — U.S. Rep. Jacky Rosen produced a college transcript this week showing she earned an associate degree in computing and information technology in response to allegations from her Republican opponent, Sen. Dean Heller, that she fabricated a computing degree.
Heller's re-election campaign released a digital ad last week that said Rosen "made it up" when she's said she built a business as a computer programmer and gave a 2017 C-SPAN interview in which the Democratic congresswoman said she had a "degree in computers."
"I actually got a degree in psychology, and in computers, I actually learned how to, I'm a computer programmer, systems analyst by trade," she said in the interview.
Heller's ad stops the clip after the word "computers," and then declares "No computer degree. She made it up."
Rosen's campaign showed the Las Vegas Review-Journal the congresswoman's transcript from Clark County Community College showing she earned in 1985 an associate of applied sciences in computing and information technology. The college, now known as the College of Southern Nevada, confirmed the degree.
The degree was not previously listed on her congressional biography or campaign website and it's unclear if Rosen ever previously disclosed that she went back to school and earned the tech degree after she earned a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Minnesota in 1979.
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Heller's ad also highlighted that public records show little detail about Rosen's computer programming consulting business and called it "imaginary."
State officials say Rosen would not have needed a business license and city officials in Henderson, where she ran her business, say a license would have been destroyed a year after she closed her business in 2002.
Rosen lists a self-employment retirement account on her financial disclosure forms. Her campaign also provided a copy of a resignation letter dated Sept. 15, 1993, where she told her employer, Southwest Gas, that she was leaving for personal reasons but "would be happy to contribute to technical support on an as needed consulting basis."
Mary McCrary, a management consultant and former director of technical services at Southwest Gas Corporation, says she worked with Rosen for several years at Southwest Gas and remembers Rosen continuing to work with the team after quitting her job and becoming a contractor in the early 1990s.
McCrary said Rosen was a software programmer who helped create a new billing system and was a database administrator.
Heller's campaign spokesman Keith Schipper questioned why Rosen waited 42 days to produce the degree after the campaign first questioned it.
Stewart Boss, a spokesman for Rosen's campaign, said the Heller ad prompted their response.