Hal Daub and Jon Bruning weren’t “forced” out of the Senate race against Mike Johanns.
Bob Kerrey, Mike Fahey and Tony Raimondo weren’t either (though more on TR below).
But ALL of them realized that Johanns has a huge lead in the polls and in fundraising ability and that a race against him would be a steep uphill battle.
Daub realized that he couldn’t raise the money he would need.
Bruning realized that a win would be very difficult and a loss would damage his political career.
Kerrey and Fahey realized that they couldn’t cake-walk into the Senate and weren’t willing to risk it all, in what would be a likely loss.
Raimondo said he couldn’t beat Johanns after MJ was endorsed by Governor Dave Heineman.
And the favorite savior, Scott Kleeb, has been heard often to say that he doesn’t think he can beat Johanns. Don’t be surprised if you hear that Kleeb isn’t willing to run for the Senate either. Of course it will be because he has other obligations, or wants to do other things, or his cowboy boots are to tight. You’ll never hear a Dem say that they don’t think they could beat Johanns. That would be the truth, you see…
But Tony! Toni! Toné! Raimondo now has confirmed that he is talking to the state and national Dems about running as a Dem.
Gee, sounds like something we heard on Leavenworth Street back in May.
So TR has met with national Dems (likely with BFF Ben Nelson in the room). And with state Dems (like with Nebraska Dem leader Steve Achepohl, who said he had no intention of speaking with Raimondo).
But now our sources report that Raimondo was seen yesterday walking out of…the Governor’s Mansion?
Does Raimondo feel that he needs to explain himself to Dave Heineman? Get his blessing? Find out if he can switch his party affiliation in that state office? We really don’t know. But it’s intriguing, no?
Did you know that yesterday State Treasurer Shane Osborn was selected by the Aspen Institue to be in their Aspen-Rodel Fellows Program in Public Leadership? This is a fairly big deal. The Aspen Institute is, to quote Wikipedia, “an international nonprofit organization dedicated to fostering enlightened leadership.” It has a bipartisan board of trustees (made up of such folks as Madeleine Albright and Michael Powell), and it’s new class of Aspen-Rodel Fellows is made up of twelve Democrat and twelve Republican national “true rising stars”. Congratulations Shane!
So compare State Treasurer Shane Osborn’s honor to the goofy editorials we saw in the OWH this past wekeend.
First on Saturday Mike Nellis, owner of the political web design consulting company “Design Progress” who put up the “Draft Scott Kleeb” website, was given over seven hundred words to try to spout that Scott Kleeb is a “leader” (the headline was “Leadership of Kleeb can make difference“). We won’t bother trying to analyze the logic that a former ranch-hand who just started his first full time job teaching a few days a week is a leader, but you get the drift.
Then in Sunday’s OWH Editorial, they went with the headline, “The need for leaders“, in their convoluted plea for someone (with no direct mention of Kleeb) to challenge Mike Johanns since, “Republicans shouldn’t waltz into office unchallenged”.
Boy the headlines for those two editorial pieces sure are similar, ain’t they? Why, if we were of the conspiracy theory vein, we’d even guess that maybe the OWH encouraged Mr. Nellis to take that angle when he wrote his little piece. But hey, we would never accuse the OWH of doing such an unethical thing to further their goal to push Kleeb’s career. They’re above that, right?
Anywho, when we were looking at the these forays at nothingness, we were struck by the comparisons of Scott Kleeb and Shane Osborn. Let’s take a look.
Kleeb is 32 years old. After growing up on an Army base in Italy, Kleeb graduated from University of Colorado, then got his advanced degree in a study of cattle ranching (we think) from Yale, in Connecticut. He then decided he was the man to represent Nebraska’s third district, but lost by 10%. He now is teaching history at Hastings College. Democrats think he is a leader and is now qualified to be Nebraska’s Senator.
Shane Osborn is 33 years old. After growing up in Norfolk Nebraska, he received an ROTC scholarship to, and graduated from, the University of Nebraska. After that he flew spy planes as a lieutenant in United States Navy. During a mission, his plane was hit by a Chinese fighter jet, but he saved his twenty-three person crew by landing the crippled aircraft. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. After he left the Navy, he worked for a financial services company in Omaha. In 2006 he was elected Nebraska State Treasurer. As noted above, he was recently selected as an Aspen-Rodel Fellow.
Now. Looking at those two resumes and accomplishments, who comes off as more of a “leader” for Nebraska? The one with Navy medals and actual work experience who went for a “lower level” elected state position, is slowly making a name for himself and is comfortable biding his time? Or the one who has the Ivy League degree and a pretty face and believes he is entitled to a represent Nebraska in Washington right now?
And by the way, we haven’t even mentioned Nebraska’s reps in the House, State offices, and Legislature with keen resumes who have bright futures in Nebraska politics.
Just so it’s all in perspective for you.
Now, back to the Husker message boards…