Charlie Cook Hates Frank Niceley's Idea to End Senate Primaries

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Charlie Cook, the respected political analyst, took the time to write a scathing rebuke for The Atlantic of Sen. Frank Niceley's weird plan to end party primaries and let Republicans and Democrats in the legislature choose U.S. Senate nominees.

"You can hear bad ideas almost every day," Cook begins. "But only occasionally do you hear a colossally bad, ill-conceived idea, one that leaves you wondering who dreamed it up."

That's right, a proud member of our Republican supermajority dreamed it up. Welcome to our little corner of hell, Charlie. Of Niceley, Cook writes:

Another one of Nicely's interesting ideas was to be one of four Republican state legislators in Tennessee to sign onto a 2009 lawsuit challenging President Obama to release his birth certificate. Another was his opposition to an effort to make cockfighting a felony. Also interesting, Nicely was deemed "hostile to business" by the Knoxville Chamber of Commerce, something rather odd for a Republican lawmaker.

Hopefully cooler heads will prevail. This only came to my attention when a prominent Republican in the state whom I have known for years brought it up with me, hoping that national attention might help kill a profoundly bad idea. Let's hope this column will help.

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