She said it is also possible other interested parties may challenge Tennant's decision.
"This may end up being reviewed by the courts again," she said.
In 1994, the state Supreme Court rejected an effort by the state Republican Party to require a special election to fill an unexpired term on Kanawha Circuit Court, citing the same primary election requirement in the state code.
Also Tuesday, Kanawha County Commission President Kent Carper became the first prominent Democrat to call for a special election for the unexpired term.
Carper said a 21/2-year term is "excessive" for a temporary appointee.
"That's longer than the term of someone who is elected to Congress [the U.S. House] by six months," he said.
If nothing else, he said a special legislative session should be called to "correct" the law, as the Massachusetts General Assembly did following the death of Sen. Ted Kennedy.
"To me, there ought to be an election, so there can be accountability," Carper said. "I'm convinced it could be accomplished, if there is a will to do it."
@tag:Reach Phil Kabler at ph...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1220.