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Breaking: Senator Jon Ensign (R, NV) resigning.

Roll Call reports that it’s effective as of May 3rd. At the moment, the actual details of why Ensign is retiring so suddenly are not yet officially known, but it probably has something to do with the fallout from an affair with a staffer and some possible ethics violations (beyond the obvious one) that resulted.

It’s widely expected that Governor Sandoval will appoint Rep. Dean Heller (R, NV-02) to the seat; Heller is already running, given that Ensign had earlier announced that he was retiring.  Cook has this race as Toss-up, mostly because it was open: Heller getting a jump on incumbency won’t hurt that.  Of more immediate interest is how a hypothetical special election to replace Heller will fall out.  Particularly since the districts will change anyway: Nevada’s getting another Congressional seat, and the legislature’s Democratic-controlled, so expect a wild, bumpy ride…

Moe Lane

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