25% of my readers and I aren't the only folks who think Rep. Stace Nelson would make a good challenger to U.S. Senate candidate M. Michael Rounds. Check out the Primary-palooza quote of the day from Professor Jon Schaff:
Political science professor Jon Schaff of Northern State University said Nelson or someone like him probably will challenge Rounds from the right.
“Stace Nelson strikes me as being exactly the kind of person who might make a run at this,” Schaff said. “I don’t know if it’s because he really honestly thinks he can beat Rounds, but certainly there’s going to be a certain wing of the Republican Party who is unhappy with Mike Rounds’ moderate Republicanism. They’re going to want to make at least an airing of the grievances, if you will, against that more pragmatic, less ideological wing of the Republican Party” [David Montgomery, "Conservative Lawmaker Nelson Pondering Senate Run," Political Smokeout, 2013.04.12].
Read that carefully: Schaff isn't endorsing Nelson. He's not even saying Nelson would have a shot. He's just saying Nelson fits the profile of the kind of person who would jump into this race to challenge Rounds.
And I can see where on the main lines of attack against Rounds, like his dreaded RINO pragmatism and sloppy fiscal management, Nelson is the perfect candidate to tackle him. Nelson has made RINO-calling a core element of his rhetoric. In his third year as a legislator, he has managed to maintain his outsider status. He makes more sense and keeps his eyes on practical policy issues better than any of the other RINO shouters in the state. And he has managed, perhaps in part through clever Jedi mind tricks on this liberal blogger, to make a name for himself outside of Fulton and his legislative district in a way that not many other legislators do.
Plus, Stace is even cuter when he plays hard to get.
Nelson v. Rounds would be the most fun primary race we could ask for. It would also provide the most cogent expression of the battle for between the mainstream GOP and the ultra-conservative forces who want to make that party their own.