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April 24, 2014

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Angle says Sandoval could have told governor ‘no’ in 2003

On the campaign trail, Republican Senate candidate Sharron Angle has been trumpeting her decision to appeal a 2003 Nevada Supreme Court decision that cleared the way for the Legislature to pass a tax increase without the constitutionally-mandated two-thirds vote.

In 2003, Angle was one of 15 Assembly members who temporarily blocked a tax hike until one of their members changed his vote.

Angle was so angry at the Nevada Supreme Court, which invalidated the voter-passed constitutional amendment requiring the two-thirds vote, that she recruited a constitutional lawyer to appeal the case in federal court.

Angle says voters punished the Nevada Supreme Court justices who made the initial ruling by voting them out.

So, that raises the question: How much should voters hold Republican gubernatorial candidate Brian Sandoval responsible for his role as attorney general in bringing the lawsuit on behalf of Gov. Kenny Guinn in the first place?

I posed the question to Angle this morning. She laughed nervously for a good 30 seconds before saying she holds the governor more responsible for initiating it.

“(Sandoval) has said he felt that was his job as attorney general to do what the governor had asked him to do because he was the governor’s attorney,” Angle said.

Should Sandoval have just said no?

“I think there was an opportunity probably for him to say no, but I don’t know,” she said. “That’s difficult for me to answer.”

She quickly noted, however, that Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto recently told Gov. Jim Gibbons no when he asked her to join other states in suing to halt the federal health care legislation.

“I certainly would have liked to see her (join that suit),” Angle said.

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