AG lets Nielsen off the hook

Says insufficient evidence to force assemblyman from office

Newly elected Assemblyman Jim Nielsen (pictured) will keep his seat, apparently. The office of Attorney General Jerry Brown has announced that it has not found sufficient evidence to force him out of office.

For two months, AG investigators had been looking into charges that Nielsen, a former state senator, had claimed residency in a small Gerber doublewide mobile home in order to run for office in District 2, when in fact he lived in a gated community in Woodland, outside the district.

The charge had been vigorously pressed by Charlie Schaupp, a Yolo County farmer who came in second to Nielsen in the June Republican primary. In an e-mail message, Schaupp said he intended to run against Nielsen in 2010.

Nielsen easily won election in November, beating Democratic opponent Paul Singh with 65.4 percent of the vote.