- Associated Press - Monday, April 6, 2015

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - The North Dakota Legislature has passed a bill that would prohibit the governor from appointing a successor to a vacant North Dakota congressional seat.

North Dakota’s Senate voted 27-20 Monday to approve the measure. The House passed the bill in February.

Republican Rep. Roscoe Streyle introduced the bill, which is response to a rumored gubernatorial bid next year by popular freshman Democratic U.S. Sen. Heidi Heitkamp.

She’s been mum on the subject.

Streyle says the goal is to allow voters to choose the successor instead of the governor.

North Dakota law already requires a special election if the state’s lone U.S. House seat is vacated.

Heitkamp is the only Democrat holding a statewide office in North Dakota. She unsuccessfully ran for governor in 2000.

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