What happened
An hour before Tuesday’s Democratic debate, the Nevada Supreme Court ruled that NBC had the right to exclude longshot presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich. A lower court had threatened to block the event unless Kucinich was allowed to participate. (The New York Times’ The Caucus blog, free registration)

What the commentators said
The muzzling of Kucinich was “an outrage,” said Blake Fleetwood in The Huffington Post, “and a real loss for democracy.” A “dissenting candidate” like Kucinich is just what the Democrats need to really make this race about change. Marginalizing him was just “another example of corrupt, corporate control of politics.”

Including Kucinich wouldn’t have caused much trouble, said Jane Roh in the National Journal’s The Gate blog. But, honestly, Kucinich had plenty of chances to speak in “a summer and fall of eight-person-plus debates.” The real contest now is down to Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and John Edwards—“and one has to place a pretty big asterisk next” Edwards’ name.

Kucinich might want to turn his attention elsewhere, said Josh Kraushaar in the Politico. Both he and the Republican longshot candidate—Ron Paul—face “serious” challengers in their bids for reelection to Congress, with one of Paul’s rivals complaining that he’s ignoring “the homefront.” These mavericks stir up strong feelings from their “supporters on the presidential trail, back home the natives are getting restless.”