So who could the MAJOR endorsement for Pete Ricketts be?
By all standards, there are only two, maybe three real endorsements that would mean anything:
1) Mike Johanns
2) Chuck Hagel
3) Tom Osborne
Now, Johanns probably has to get the Administration’s OK to do anything like this, and they probably don’t do it as a rule, in a primary anyway. So he’s likely out.
Chuck also, being the sitting Senator, probably can’t endorse someone in this, lest he end up serving, with someone in his own party, who he DIDN’T endorse in the primary. That would be just a little awkward (though Chuckwood DID endorse Big Dave Heineman early, so it’s not beyond him…)
Finally there’s TO. Now being in his own race, he probably doesn’t want to stick his neck out for someone else. But hopefully TO would realize that the only candidate who can beat Earl B. Nelson is Pete Ricketts. If Dave Kramer hadn’t been the flame-throwing party chair, and had a little more cash, he could go places. But it would probably take another campaign for him to shed uber-partisan label. And No-Show-Donno has proven, repeatedly, that he can’t win this state-wide race. Of course, that’s not to say that he can’t win the primary.
Which is the point. He-who-will-not-debate has a very good chance to win the primary. And if he does, it will be six more years of Senator Earl. Does Osborne care? Is he willing to spend some of his political capital before he even wins his own primary?
I guess we’ll see who Ricketts comes up with this afternoon.
But if it ain’t one of the Big Three above…well…it won’t be “major”.