GOP Rep. Heller: Ensign is a 'wounded' senator

Sen. John Ensign's (R) been "wounded" in his ability to serve Nevada, a state GOP colleague said.

Rep. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) said he was concerned about Ensign's capacity to serve since revelations have emerged about the senator's role in allegedly trying to secure a contract for a company while it was considering hiring a top former aide, with whose wife Ensign had cheated.

"The fact that we have a wounded junior senator, yeah, I think that is a cause for concern," Heller said Wednesday evening during an appearance on "Nevada Newsmakers," broadcast on KRNV television.

Ensign's actions have come under increased scrutiny as more and more details have emerged in recent months about his affair and his interactions with a former aide, Doug Hampton.

Heller would not call for Ensign's resignation, but expressed serious concern that the senator's scandal could have a downballot effect on Republican candidates in Nevada, where the GOP is hoping to defeat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) for reelection this fall.

"Will it have impact up and down the ticket for Republicans this fall?" Heller said. "I think there is a potential of that happening."

Heller called on Ensign to be more forthcoming about the details of his affair, as well as the federal investigation to have emerged as a result.

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