Nevada voters are going to have to pick a candidate or stay home from the polls, now that a federal judge has struck down the Silver State's unique "none of the above" ballot option just in time for a crucial Senate election.
U.S. District Judge Robert C. Jones tossed the option, which has been on Nevada state election ballots since 1978. The protest vote had become a tradition in which disgusted voters vented their spleens and sent a message to candidates. But a GOP-linked law firm filed suit, claiming that the protest choice disenfranchises other voters, and Jones ruled Wednesday that because the "none" option can never win, even if it gets the most votes, it essentially makes those votes not count.
The issue would likely have little effect on the presidential race, because the "none" option is only available for state ballots. But Nevada is currently seeing a pitched battle between Republican Sen. Dean Heller and his Democratic challenger, Rep. Shelley Berkley, in a race that could have major national implications.