Thursday, April 7, 2011 | 4:43 p.m.
Perennial candidate Edward Hamilton said today he plans to challenge Rep. Dean Heller in a Republican primary for U.S. Senate.
Both men will seek the seat left open by Republican Sen. John Ensign's retirement.
Other candidates are also expected to enter the race, including possibly Sharron Angle.
"I don't think any politician should go to the general election without being challenged," Hamilton said. "There shouldn't be a free ride in a mature and robust democracy."
Hamilton has run twice unsuccessfully for U.S. Senate. He launched his first campaign against Ensign in 2006 as a Republican, then challenged Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid last year as a Democrat.
Most recently, Hamilton ran for Henderson City Council in the primary election that was decided Tuesday. He came in third, receiving almost 6 percent of the vote, or 863 votes in total.
Hamilton insists he will receive more support in the Senate primary.
"My ballot name is more well known than Heller's in Southern Nevada," he said. In the Henderson race, Hamilton went by the nickname "tough guy."
Hamilton said he plans to run as a "switch hitter" who is conservative on the budget and government spending and liberal on foreign policy. He advocates for non-military intervention overseas.
"Heller is just a country bumpkin who has never been out of the U.S.," Hamilton said.