Democrat Chuck Hassebrook is announcing for U.S. Senate today in his hometown of Lyons, Nebraska.
No idea how he comes out of the gate, but we don’t see him on the conservative edge of many issues — as you could certainly argue that Ben Nelson is/was.
From NEGOP Chair Mark Fahleson:
“(Hassebrook is) more liberal than Ben Nelson on the issues of health care, tax cuts, agriculture policy, and environmental regulation – an Occupy Wall Street sympathizer who has more in common with Barack Obama than with mainstream Nebraska.”
On the Occupy front (as it were), we noticed the organizer of Hassebrook’s campaign Facebook page. It was one of staff members, Brian DePew, of his Center for Rural Affairs — who uses the image at the right for his Facebook profile.
Now of course you can’t judge the guy solely on his staffers. But, this probably gives you a good indication of where he leans on those issues. You will probably hear him echo Ben Nelson’s positions, and then if you nudge him, he will tilt to the left of those.
And good luck with that.
We see that Omaha City Councilman Ben Gray’s proposal to create a protected class in homosexual and transgender citizens will come up for a vote again.
Gray has proposed that the city prevent discrimination based on “sexual orientation or gender identity.” Hmm. How are those defined?
Gender Identity: “The actual or perceived appearance, expression, identity or behavior of a person as being male or female, whether or not that appearance, expression, identity or behavior is different from that traditionally associated with the person’s designated sex at birth.”
Ah. That clear to everyone?
Sexual Orientation: ‘Actual or perceived heterosexuality, homosexuality or bisexuality.”
The OWH reported that, “Employers would not be required to provide employment benefits to same-sex partners under the proposal.”
Yeah? How long would that hold up?
OK, so here is our first question: Is this currently a problem? Are there cases — or A case — where someone in Omaha has claimed to have lost their job because of their sexual orientation or gender identity?
Because we remember when the issue of proposing stricter voting procedures — and by “strict” we mean showing an ID before you vote — the Boldies screeched, “This isn’t a problem! Show us the problem here!” So that is apparently the standard.
(Tangent: When protesters wanted to protest the idea of having to show their IDs to vote, they first had to show an ID to enter the Justice Department. Oh the humanity…)
And of course the proposed ordinance has this little hurdle: Since when can the city create a new protected class? Does the Charter allow it? How about the State Constitution? Or the U.S. Constitution?
Or is this someone’s ploy to get the issue before the U.S. Supreme Court?
And does ANYONE think this supremely vague ordinance would NOT serve host to a plethora of lawsuits? Hey, can he be in the women’s bathroom? Why isn’t there a separate bathroom in every building? Where is the separate locker rooms? Why no partner rights? What was the perceived expression of the person? What is the traditional identity?
We are just throwing those out there, but you can imagine what could be thrown against the wall.
And then there is the effort to water down the proposal. So the Omaha Council peeps who opposed it, suggested a “resolution” which read, in part, that no one should be targeted for hatred for any reason. Really? We hate pedophiles, murderers and rapists. Tell us again what the problem is there. Some of us also hate turnips. Can’t stand them. (You think they’re going to be similar to a potato, and then they have a funny weird bitterness.) Screw turnips. So now we’re running athwart of the Omaha City Council?
This is what happens. (And don’t even get us started on “hate” crimes. Is it a crime, or isn’t it? Who cares if someone loves or hates you when they stab you?)
And you can all feel free to argue the merits of this to your heart’s content. There are a myriad of legal issues involved, and we don’t pretend to necessarily be experts on many or any of them.
But we DO know this:
There are some who are in favor of Gray’s ordinance. And there are many, many who are opposed.
And currently, the crucial tie-breaking vote is West Omaha Councilman Franklin Thompson. Thompson, who teaches at UNO has reportedly been getting some pressure to vote in favor of Gray’s ordinance.
And if he does, you can bet your winning Lotto ticket that he will find himself opposed in his next race by a very well-supported opponent or two. That’s just the reality of the political world.
We don’t believe that Thompson has shown his cards on this yet, but if he does tilt toward Ben Gray, look for more excitement and candidates in Thompson’s district.
We hate to say, this is the truth. (Dang! There we go again!)
The sports/gossip site Deadspin is making an argument that maybe Omaha Mayor Jim Suttle is handing out just a few too many Keys to the City these days.
Case in point: Pseudo-average UFC fighter Jake “The Juggernaut” Ellenberger.
Now Ellenberger is also a former wrestling coach at UNO and a U.S. Marine. But somehow we suspect he wouldn’t have received the key from the Mayor unless he had entered the Octagon.
Then again, a few years ago we saw one of those keys on eBay…
Your political Valentine from Dan Moser today:
You’re red state, I’m blue state. Let’s make some purple together.