Carson City District Judge James Todd Russell says the Nevada GOP gets to pick its nominee to contest the special election to fill Nevada’s 2nd Congressional seat, recently vacated by Dean Heller’s appointment to the U.S. Senate. The Democratic party gets to pick it’s nominee too, but it was the Republican who sued to overturn Nevada Secretary of State Ross Miller’s decision to run the special election as a single open contest open to any candidate who qualified for the ballot.
As Lauren W. Whittington reports in Roll Call, if this ruling stands, the Republicans have a much better chance of holding the seat:
Russell’s ruling, which is likely to be appealed, gives the parties until June 30 to nominate their candidates for the special election. It also boosts GOP prospects of holding the district, which was almost evenly split between President Barack Obama and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) in the 2008 presidential election but leans Republican on the local level.
Thursday’s decision appears to give Nevada Republican Party Chairman Mark Amodei the inside track to becoming the GOP nominee. It also deals a major blow to former Senate candidate Sharron Angle, who has already announced she is seeking the 2nd district seat. Angle, who lost to Sen. Harry Reid (D) in 2010, does not have strong support within the state party apparatus, and it has been made clear that GOP leaders would not pick her as their nominee.