Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Update on Nevada's 2nd Congressional district featuring court rulings and a note on Sharron Angle's potential future

I was away for a few days and noticed upon my return that a Nevada District Court judge in Carson City
sided late last week with the state Republican Party over ballot rules to determine who can run to fill the now vacant Nevada 2nd Congressional District seat.

I wrote about the original sequence of events a little while ago.

Initially, the Democratic Secretary of State, Ross Miller, decided that any candidate who qualified to run in the September 13th special election would be allowed to do so. This meant that in theory there could be several Republican and several Democratic candidates on the ballot.

Given that the Nevada 2nd is a safer Republican seat, splitting the vote amongst conservatives was seen as the Democrats' best chance of stealing one.

Republicans successfully took it to court to overturn Miller's decision, thus turning the job over to party committees as to which single Republican and which single Democrat would run to represent their respective parties.

If that ruling stands, it will be good news for Republicans, though there is concern within the GOP that failed Nevada Senate candidate Sharron Angle, who has her eye on this Congressional seat, will run whether or not she gets her party's nod. Since it seems highly unlikely that she would be handed the Republican nomination, vote splitting on the right continues to be a concern should she run as an independent. 

Late breaking news is that lawyers for the Nevada attorney general plan to file court papers with the state Supreme Court appealing the Carson City judge's ruling limiting who can run.

You'll recall that Dean Heller held the seat for the Republicans before being appointed to the Senate to fill a vacancy created by Republican John Ensign's resignation when he was forced to step down after what the Las Vegas Review-Journal called "marital infidelities." Nice term that.

It's not clear where this will land in the courts, but I must say that I had no idea Republican Congressional politics in Nevada could be so much fun.

It seems also to be the case that we still may not have seen the end of Tea Party darling Sharron Angle, undoubtedly one of the conservative movement's dimmer lights, which has to be good news for Democrats everywhere. Please stick around a while longer, Sharron. Please.

(Cross-posted at Lippmann's Ghost.)

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