Republicans could be getting a break in upstate New York, where state Assemblyman Greg Ball (R) says he will run for state Senate rather than against Rep. John Hall (D-N.Y.).
Ball announced Saturday that he would make the switch. His exit clears the primary for ophthalmologist Nan Hayworth, who recently got in the race and has caught the eye of the national party.
Ball, meanwhile, has a flamboyant personal style and political history that rubbed some the wrong way. At the same time, he was raising more money than Hall and looked to be a formidable obstacle to Hayworth. [...]
He will now run for the 40th district in the state Senate, a closely divided chamber that has switched control multiple times just this year.
Ball, as you may recall, was recently busted by Roll Call for spreading misleading poll results for his race against Hall. More curious, though, is his decision to run in SD40. The 40th District is already held by a Republican, Vincent Leibell, and I'm unaware of any plans for Leibell to retire. Ball may be just the type of nut, though, to capture the attention of the teabagging base in a primary fight.
The 40th SD is also marginally Democratic in terms of voter registration (by about a 70K to 67K edge), though Dems didn't bother to put up a challenger for the seat in 2008. However, with Ball dipped into the mix, it might be worth putting a warm body into the race, just in case.