July 14th, 2009
11:15 AM ET
5 years ago

Ensign says he will seek re-election

Nevada Gov. John Ensign said Monday he will run for reelection.
Nevada Gov. John Ensign said Monday he will run for reelection.

(CNN) - Sen. John Ensign has no intention of resigning his seat and will run for re-election in 2012.

"I fully plan on running for reelection," the Nevada Republican told the Las Vegas Sun Monday. "I'm going to work to earn their respect back."

Ensign, who has admitted to an affair with a former campaign staffer, also told the paper he is receiving calls and e-mails from constituents encouraging him to stay in office, and said Senate leaders "on both sides" have offered their support.

He said he is being told to "(k)eep your head up. This thing will pass."

Ensign has faced mounting pressure following last week's revelation that parents paid the family of his former mistress close to $100,000 after she was no longer working for the senator. A lawyer for Ensign said last week the payments were legally made as "gifts, accepted as gifts and complied with tax rules governing gifts."

In a Mason-Dixon poll conducted shortly after his admission of an affair late last month, only 29 percent of Nevadans said Ensign should step down. The same poll showed Ensign with a 39 percent approval rating, five points higher than that of Nevada's other senator, Democratic leader Harry Reid.


Filed under: John Ensign
soundoff (24 Responses)
  1. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    This guy is nuts. I'm sure there will be a ethics investigation about the so called "gifts." $12,000 isn't a gift, it's a bribe.

    July 14, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  2. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    If he does make it out of this mess unscathed, he sure can't run for re-election based on family values.

    July 14, 2009 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  3. Deb

    Good. Do we have a good democrat to replace him?

    July 14, 2009 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  4. jack

    Your going down. But that's what your were telling your staffer. How's is feel to have the shoe on the other foot?

    July 14, 2009 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  5. cjr

    this guy lives in a house of right wingers who b elieve they have been chosen by God to lead the world – in other words he is a cult member. Under their teaching – he has done nothing wrong. The RNC is very quiet about this as are the republican senators. Something is very wrong. Hopefully the voters will send him a very strong message to get out of town!

    July 14, 2009 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  6. Roger

    Why Not? He paid them off. Thats what America is all about, the rich acting corruptly & immoral & pay their way out of it when caught. So why change now? Lets keep following the party of the rich don't the path of greed, no morals & destruction of an once proud, honest country.

    July 14, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  7. Ted Tartaglia

    Isn't it amusing that Republican evangelical politicians have a hard time living up to the family values they espouse? They condemn everyone else for moral failures and demand censure but when they themselves are caught with their pants down they demand forgiveness. This sounds like a double standard to me. A good solution is for voters to require these demagogues to live up to their own standards and when they fail, boot the rascals out. Seems fair, doesn't it?

    July 14, 2009 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  8. RNC=Rush, Newt, Cheney

    Are you kidding me!!! really what your trying to say is you and gov Sanford want to move forward with no reprocutions to bribary and infidelity and hope the States that you represent and the American people forget about it so you can sweep it under your political rug of lies and betrayal. Good Luck with that!!!! NEVADA I HOPE YOUR SMARTER THEN TO FALL FOR THAT CRAP!!!!!!!!!

    July 14, 2009 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  9. GoHillary16!

    Stay strong Senator Ensign! America needs people like you in the Republican party.

    July 14, 2009 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  10. Anne E.

    The hypocrisy is incomprehensible, and Ensign is reprehensible.

    July 14, 2009 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  11. me

    Gee, Johnny Boy, maybe mommy and daddy can buy your Senate seat, too.

    July 14, 2009 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  12. Dennis

    Maybe he's planning on having his parents pay off the voters like they did the family of his "friend"?

    July 14, 2009 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  13. Thomas

    Well Gov Ensign has the right to run for reerection. Whether the citizens of NV will vote for him is another story.

    He is being told to "keep his head up"? Was that not what caused this problem in the first place.

    John, I think they are talking about your other head.

    July 14, 2009 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  14. beachgirl

    Another moron republican that is hipocrat, unfaithfull and ignorant about the American people.

    Does he think he can be re-elected? UNBELIEABLE!!!!

    July 14, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  15. Hugo

    Who cares, this just supports what I keep saying: Vote ALL career politicians out of office! Public office is a patriotic duty and an honor not a lifetime career to get fat off of tax dollars!

    July 14, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  16. citizenjane

    "and said Senate leaders "on both sides" have offered their support."
    ------------------

    All members of the C-Street, Washington D.C., "Family" cult, no doubt. The power of fundamentalism in America isn't going away too soon, is it? Keep supporting these losers, GOP. It's your money.

    July 14, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  17. gl, From Pittsburgh

    Well at least he wont' be running on Family Values any more.

    July 14, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  18. Dude

    It's so nice to see conservative hypocrisy in action.

    July 14, 2009 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  19. Marty, Grand Rapids Mi

    Nice. Thanks for handing democrats another senate seat.

    July 14, 2009 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  20. I fully plan on running for reelection

    good, I am glad you are upholding the GOP values

    I think paying off a mistress, her mortgage or the like, using a christian group to do it, all are values I look for in a leader

    the Dems should run well against you

    July 14, 2009 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  21. Jamie from Riverside

    Maybe you can get your mom and pop to vote for you but don't count on anyone elses.

    July 14, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  22. Paul , St. Louis MO

    Is he going to run on his old platform of family values?

    July 14, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  23. Mike

    Typical politician. He is a low life scumb bag who screwed the wife of a man working for him, doubled her salary, gave him a big raise (this came out of the pockets of the american tax payer) gets caught, has his parents give the $96,000 and says he will run again and that the citizens of his state want him to run again and that leaders of both parties back him.
    This is just one small example of why the American People must eventually rise up and revolt against the Government and throw out every single politician and rewrite a Constitution where the American People are in charge – not politicians.

    July 14, 2009 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  24. SHIRLEY SDL

    What a hypocritical, lying idiot. He along with the rest of the the GOP are certainly not living up to their values that they hold everyone else to. He said that anyone guilty of the similar behaviour that he has exhibited, should step aside. HA!

    July 14, 2009 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |