I'd seen Skinwalker Ranch in tv listings, but didn't know the truly grim story:
Why do these repetitive UFO stories keep coming up? The answer is Harry Reid—that’s right, the Senate majority leader—who was a UFO enthusiast and reportedly good friends with Robert Bigelow, the owner of “Skinwalker Ranch” where all sorts of goblins, shades, aliens, and “dino-beavers” (I’m serious) are seen. When people talk about a secret military program to study UFOs, they are likely mainly referring to how Bigelow’s company received a grant for 22 million to study wacky stuff at Skinwalker Ranch, including UFOs.
Reid initiated the program, which ultimately spent more than $20 million, through an earmark after he was persuaded in part by aerospace titan and hotel chain founder Bob Bigelow, a friend and fellow Nevadan who owns Bigelow Aerospace, a space technology company and government contractor. Bigelow, whose company received some of the research contracts, was also a regular contributor to Reid’s reelection campaigns, campaign finance records show, at least $10,000 from 1998 to 2008.
"I'm not embarrassed or ashamed or sorry I got this thing going," Reid told the Times. "I think it's one of the good things I did in my congressional service. I've done something that no one has done before."