Candidates new and old!

Clifton R Johnson 01The U.S. Senate race has a new candidate. It is someone named, Clifton R. Johnson (no relation to Navin R. Johnson) from Fort Calhoun. Mr. Johnson owns the Perfect Stay Inn and Suites in Blair and Council Bluffs, Iowa and has an eleven year old daughter named America.

You can learn (slightly) more about Mr. Johnson at his campaign web-page. The site’s only image is that of George Washington, but we think we found a shot of him (to your right).

Good luck Mr. Johnson (and stay away from those cans)!


If you haven’t tired of the three-day old story of Pete Festersen quitting the 2nd District Congressional race, you’re in luck! Because the OWH’s Erin Grace does a fawning, Front Page, 1,000 word piece all about just how much Pete Festersen loves his family. Which is the REAL reason he just couldn’t become the next Mr. Smith going to Washington.

In the article we learn that Pete (who didn’t have time to raise money, but DOES have time to have a sit-down interview with Ms. Grace) has experience running for office, working for Senators, working for Mayors and has a bloodline of office holders in his family — but this whole money raising thing? Who knew??????

Sure Ms. Grace has the investigative chops to inform you that Pete’s daughter not only had the word “strawberry” in her spelling bee that Pete couldn’t miss, but ALSO the word “oxygen”! (See this is the sort of hard-hitting info you won’t get from publications like The Hill or Roll Call.)

But, maybe if Ms. Grace had asked around, she might have discovered, like we did, that apparently one of the reasons Mr. Festersen has had such a difficult time raising money is because of the way he bungled the recent MECA board appointment. And the Powers-That-Be in Omaha weren’t giving to his campaign like he had hoped.

Oh and then there’s that little matter of ObamaCare — about which Pete would not give ANY comments while he WAS a candidate — that is dashing the hopes of contending Democrats all across the country.

But hey, that would just spoil the nice story about Festersen — and the extra photo of Pete with his wife and two kids.

So here’s some hard-hitting news for ya:

Ya know what eases the pain of fund-raising all day long and missing your kid’s recital? Winning.
And winning easy. And KNOWING you’re going to win. That ALL of the misery you’re going through now will mean that you’re going to take that office by a landslide.

(Sort of like that if you’re a winning college football coach, all of your quirkities get washed away like the salt and scum down the car-wash drain.)

But that changed for Festersen. No slamdunk? Lee Terry may still pull it out?
Uh, then he’s got better things to do.

You know, like pick up his daughter from volleyball practice.
(Ooh, another hard-hitting detail!)


Shane Osborn released his list of law enforcement endorsements across the state. The group includes 32 County Sheriffs around Nebraska, including Tim Dunning of Douglas County and Bryan Tuma, former Colonel of the Nebraska State Patrol.

Here’s the list:

Adams County – Sheriff Gregg MaGee
Antelope County – Sheriff Robert Moore
Banner County – Sheriff Stanley McKnight
Boone County – Sheriff David Spiegel
Boyd County – Sheriff Cory Beverly
Brown County – Sheriff Bruce Papstein
Butler County – Sheriff Mark Hecker
Cass County – Sheriff Bill Brueggemann
Cedar County – Sheriff Larry Koranda
Cherry County – Sheriff Rusty Osburn
Cheyenne County – Sheriff John Jensen
Clay County – Sheriff Jeff Franklin
Colfax County – Sheriff Paul Kruse
Custer County – Sheriff Daniel Osmond
Dawes County – Sheriff Karl Dailey
Dawson County – Sheriff Gary Reiber
Dixon County – Sheriff (Duane)Dean Chase
Dodge County – Sheriff Steve Hespen
Douglas County- Sheriff Jim Dunning
Fillmore County – Sheriff William Burgess
Gosper County – Sheriff Dennis Ocken
Grant County – Sheriff Shawn Hebbert
Greeley County – Sheriff Dave Weeks
Lancaster County – Sheriff Terry Wagner
Lincoln County – Sheriff Jerome Kramer
Otoe County – Sheriff James Gress
Platte County – Sheriff Jon Zavadil
Polk County – Sheriff Dwain Ladwig
Sarpy County – Sheriff Jeff Davis
Scottsbluff County – Sheriff Mark Overman
Stanton County – Sheriff Michael Unger
Valley County – Sheriff Casey Hurlburt
Washington County – Sheriff Michael Robinson

We think the coming ad war is going to be vicious, but this sort of group doesn’t hurt Osborn.


And just to balance things out, here is that latest “energy” video from Ben Sasse.

Here’s what we’re on-board with:

1) these video press-releases are permanent, and there’s a chance people may watch them.
2) even though he’s standing outside on a really windy day, the audio is pretty decent. Good job whoever produced this.

Here’s what we’re NOT into:

1) another 4 and a half minute video about banal talking points with lines like, “We’re Nebraskans!” and “all of the above”? Sheesh. Let’s see the next one be a minute tops with a pull quote or so. Or maybe have your long one, and then a short, ad-length one. It’s not as if what was said here couldn’t be boiled down to a one-minute.

Again though, kudos to the Sasse camp with coming up with something that is post-able.


And not to be outdone, gubernatorial candidate Tom Carlson got off his waterskis long enough to give you this TWO-camera discussion about the Keystone pipeline:

Unfortunately, unlike Sasse’s video, the Carlson video, even though it was done presumably in an office, sounds like the the microphone was placed inside an aide’s left shoe, which was inside an underwater coffee can at the time.

But otherwise, love the effort.

(And next time we expect this to be done WHILE on the waterskis.)


Our thoughts and prayers go out to Attorney General Jon Bruning and his family after his announcement that he has colon cancer.

We hope for a speedy recovery.


You may not like the thought of it, but it is getting down to crunch-time for your Christmas (and Festivus) shopping! So wrap yourself into your parka and giant fur hat and fight the traffic to park about a half mile away from the mall entrance, wherein you get to fight the teenagers who are texting the person next to them.

OR…you could click on Leavenworth St.’s links at the top of the page and get your shopping done from the comfort of your desk! You’ll find a massive selection, helpful reviews and then shipping to your front door. THIS is the future!

And you’ll give a little anonymous love to L.St. in order to help us change the light-bulb that has been burning here going on EIGHT years.

Thank you to all who have purchased through Leavenworth St.’s links and thank you for telling a friend!


  1. Ricky says:

    Whoops how did that happen?
    I’ll check out that article by Erin Grace (good Catholic and Marquette U grad – go Big East – not!).
    But I don’t get the MECA reference regarding the big shots in Omaha being mad at Festersen.
    Initially everybody was on board with the Mora appointment, made as it was to help out Mr Suttle in South Omaha and nominated by Democrat Gary Gernandt. Nobody paid much attention until the conflicts of interest came out.
    But then City Councilman Festersen eventually did follow the council’s master Ken Stinson and appointed another rich white businessman to MECA. Actually if Omahan’s want to get upset, get upset at Stinson, MECA was his idea in the first place and he refused to donate money to the Qwest Center unless they had a private entity the rich guys could control without the meddling of the pesky taxpaying citizens of Omaha.
    Maybe it was the way Festersen questioned the how and why MECA appointees get vetted after Mora that caused the big shots to back away from Pete.
    Interesting story.


  2. El Sheriff Tim Dunning says:

    Who is Jim Dunning and why is he claiming to be sheriff of Douglas county or does this signify how important Osbourne think I am.

  3. Ricky says:

    When did this campaigning on video only stategy begin? Who is running Mr Sasse’s campaign? Do they really think people pay attention to a you tube video when there are millions of videos being uploaded daily?
    I see Speaker of the House Boehner has had enough of the Club For Growth and the far right secret outside organizations that are mainly behind Sasse’s campaign.
    Like I said before; judging from L Street and everything else I see Mr Sasse has zero support from Nebraskans and only is credible (if he is at all) because these outside groups have given him a bunch of cash.
    So please, Club For Growth or whomever is funneling money to Sasse, stop because that money is going down a rat hole. Give it to area foodbanks or to homeless Vets or something because you will be wasting an un-Godly sum of money on a candidate who can not win the Senate seat.


  4. Congratulations to President Barack Obama, winner of Politifact’s 2013 ‘Lie of the Year’ award for “If you like your insurance, you can keep it”. I doubt the jury had to deliberate very long.

    Now Mr Obama is not only our first black president, he’s the first president officially branded America’s greatest liar! Yay!

  5. Anonymous says:

    Gerard, Gerard, Gerard. Have you so quickly forgotten about that guy that got around 4,000 American kids slaughtered for the sake of non-existing WMDs? When GWB lied, people died.

  6. Ah, but Anonymous Coward at 10:46, you forget it was the Democrats that fought for slavery and imposed Jim Crow. My squirrel can beat up your squirrel.

    Neither has anything to do with Obama being officially our liar-in-chief either. You can’t blame Obama’s whoppers on George W Bush, though I know you’d like to.

    What is more relvant is that the same damned lie was repeated, over and over again, by congressional Democrats. While Obama won the award, it really should be shared by the whole party.

  7. Interested Observer says:

    Back on October 2, 2013 at 8:02 AM, during a discussion of the defunding Obamacare shut down, I said,

    “I’m going to go out on a limb here and wonder if Boehner might be temporarily allowing the extreme right part of the House to have their way in all of this, rather than creating a bi-partisan resolution with the majority of the more moderate Republicans and many of the Democrats, as he’s done a few times already this year, specifically to give the most radical of the Republican right the enormous opportunity and all the publicity they could ever want, to alienate themselves from the vast majority of the American voters. He gave them what they wished for. Why? Did he do this just to protect and prolong his position or did he do this to allow the extremists to damage themselves? Is Boehner simply self-serving or is he actually as dumb as a fox? I don’t know and I guess we’ll see how this all plays out over the next several days.”

    Hummmmmm . . .

  8. Tonic & Tonic says:

    So this new budget deal cuts $23B from the deficit… over 10 years. AND IT NEGATES THE SEQUESTRATION CUTS. WTF?

    Worst Deal Ever.

  9. I agree with the above. It looks like a very poor deal, made merely to get the GOP establishment a win and make them look ‘reasonable’. The GOP will never look reasonable in the eyes of the Democrat Party or the mainstream media (but I repeat myself). It’s a silly aspiration.

  10. To Tonic and Tonis says:

    Sequestration wasn’t even a cut rather a decrease in the increase of spending. This deal I hope is to allow the GOP to continue to talk about Obamacare in 2014 otherwise the GOP have lost
    their way.

  11. Hesdeadjim says:

    Tom Carlson and the water funding committee have proven their worth again with a policy proposal in the bottom half of all I seen.

    I can understand WHY they want to tax ethanol, it is after all, produced from corn that is grown with water. That aside, taxing a good at the state level that is subsidized at the federal level is an efficient way to throw (OUR) money down the toilet.

    Taxing pop is a sweet deal for guys like me who don’t touch the stuff, but it’s a regressive tax and anyone with an iota of sense will reject the idea.

    Then there’s the proposed tax on bottled water… suffice it to say that taxing drinking water is never the answer, unless the question is “what’s the second worst idea you can think of?”

  12. Fort Street Fury says:

    What if everyone who receives agricultural/land subsidies form the federal government had to give 5% of each check to the state to fund this water project wish list?

    This is about the time I would insert a GIF of Oprah “you get a car! and you get a car! cars for everybody!”

  13. Anonymous says:

    Gerard, we get enough of your own whoppers here on Leavenworth Street to keep us entertained for a good while. You wouldn’t know the truth if it hit you in the face with a baseball bat.

  14. Macdaddy says:

    Anon 10:45pm, beginning January 1, 123 deaths a day from people not having health insurance will be laid squarely at Obama’s feet. His lies, incompetence, and hubris will kill tens of thousands of Americans every year. Not only that, but he intentionally made the problem worse. Man up and own the suck.

  15. Big News! says:

    Big endorsement! The young Republicans unanimously endorsed. As Biden said ” This is a big F$&@? deal”. The Nebraska Young Republicans shocked us all last cycle when their slate card with Kerrey, Kolowaki, John Mark Carr, Brenda Council, Dr. Venkman, Sue Crawford, the whole cast from the crying game, Pastor Marples, and Koko B Ware.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Macdaddy off his meds again!

    Your numbers are ridiculous, and you fail to mention how many lives are saved from people with pre-existing conditions now able to buy insurance. Why don’t you go back to talking about the bad web site killing people? Oh wait, it’s working quote a bit better now and will continue to improve!

  17. Alas, 12:24, a silly rant from an anonymous coward has all the persuasive power of a Ramen noodle. Why waste your time?

    Most people consider Politifact biased to the left. For them to call out Obama as the teller of the year’s biggest lie is truly a landmark of our political history, albeit a shameful day for the US.

    And, I wonder, how many times did you use this lie yourself?

    In other news, David Fredoso has a wonderful chart of the US employee/population ratio. After sitting at 63% during the Bush years, it dropped to 58% by Jan 2010, and has been totally flatlined the last 4 years.

    There is no recovery. The only reason Obama wants to pivot from BozoCare to the economy is because utter stasis is a little better than ignominious failure.

  18. Macdaddy says:

    Anon 1:18, you should really keep up with the news. The Democrats claimed that 45,000 people die every year from a lack of health insurance. That’s 45,000people/365days = 123people/day. So far, more people have lost their insurance than have been able or willing to sign up for insurance. Obama said he would fix this problem. He has made it worse. Quit being a weasel. Obama owns this. By the way, your 3rd grade math teacher called. She wants you to give back your GED.

  19. The Third Man says:

    Whatever credibility Tom Carlson had as the only candidate for governor from the Third District has been doused in lighter fluid and set ablaze. In a matter of days, Carlson has pimped the Keystone Pipeline, which many northern CD3ers don’t want, and a tax on ethanol, which many southern CD3ers don’t want. Way to go Tom!

  20. Anonymous says:


    It’s not the Democratic Party claiming this, it’s Harvard Medical School. You know how Hastings College claims to be the “Harvard of the Midwest” and UNL Law School claims to be the “Harvard of Public Law Schools”? Well, Harvard Medical School really is the “Harvard” of Medical Schools and medical research.

  21. Macdaddy says:

    Seriously? Can you not read? Do you not pay any attention to what your party says? Sure Harvard came up with the numbers but the Democrats were more than happy to trumpet them to get Obamacare passed. Obama owns the dead Americans. He should have come up with a better program.

  22. Macdaddy says:

    Mr Osborn. Are you going to vote for Senator McConnell to lead the Republicans or not? What are your criteria for him to earn your vote? What would make you not vote for him? I’m just curious and I think you should answer my questions before I consider voting for you.

  23. To MacDaddy says:

    Ask Sasse why he supports Paul Ryan? The Ryan/Murray budget is a disaster. I’m glad McConnell and Osborn are against the Ryan/Murray budget.

  24. Daddy Mac says:

    Jump jump. Shane would not vote for this dumb budget that negates the budget control act of 2011. Terry Lee is now a big gubmint RINO

  25. Ricky says:

    Sadly it’s looking like Mr Terry will be re-elected once again next year. Not a qualified Dem with the cash to take him on in sight.
    Maybe it’s time I just accepted Lee Terry as my representative in the federal government and cheer him on and his policies of building the Keystone pipeline and opposing the great President Obama and Obamacare and Terry’s anti-women stance on a right to choose and tax breaks for the rich, etc.
    Then since Super Regent Hawks and Tom Osborne and Eichorst and Steven M Sipple of the Lincoln paper say BO is going to be kept I’ll just support Pelini and his foul mouth and temper and meanness to the fans and media and root root root for the Huskers no matter who is in charge.
    Our side lost; I give up; I concede.

    ricky from omaha

  26. Anonymous says:

    I really like the Sasse videos but I wish they were longer. I feel like I am in college being lectured to when watching. If we could get some really nice looking girls to sit next to me it would be just like the old glory days.

  27. TexasAnnie says:

    Why are you worried about people dying, Macdaddy? Sometimes that happens when folks assume “personal responsibility.” And since you don’t believe in government intervention, why fret now that the insurance industry is amiss? I’m assuming you’ve got your insurance.

    This mess is no worse than those deaths Nebraskans OWNED when your legislature and governor arranged for the lack of health care at the Beatrice State Development Center a few years back. What was the belief then? Oh yes, y’all believed that those medically fragile beings who had been taken into the custody of the state could do without doctors and nurses on staff. Killing those people did reduce the cost of Medicaid to hard-working, tax-paying Nebraskans. So the plan was effective.

    If your governor and wanna-be governor(s) could only get folks not taken into custody by the state off Medicaid too, you could give out more and more and more tax incentives! Why you could even give MORE tax incentives to the insurance industry there in Omaha!!!

  28. TexasAnnie says:

    Well I read about your Tax Modernization Committee’s recommendations. It appears y’all will be in for a fight again this year. Too bad you didn’t get the ‘modernization’ you need last year when Gov. Heineman proposed eliminating income tax and sales tax exemptions for a revenue neutral reformation. Just think of it! If everyone, including corporations, had to pay their sales taxes then no one, including corporations, would have to pay their income taxes. What could be more ‘fair’ than that?

  29. Gaius Gracchus says:

    “The Democrats claimed that 45,000 people die every year from a lack of health insurance.”

    MD, why base an argument on this claim?

  30. At Texas Annie says:

    You didn’t at all insult Macdaddy’s logic. You missed his point all together and then just confused the issue with some mistakes the Governer made. This has just become an insult match between blue and red. Why don’t we have a discussion that focuses on solutions? We all know people dying is bad, weather Bush, Clinton, Obama, etc… caused it. You don’t honestly believe that every Republican wants the less privileged to die do you?

  31. To 39 says:

    From the National Review: “Asked for comment from National Review Online, Osborn deflected the question a third time…” Three times Osborn has refused to answer if he does or doesn’t support McConnell. I thought he was running on “Leadership Matters.” Doesn’t sound like leadership to me.

  32. Interested Observer says:

    The “Yale Book of Quotations” 2013 update, top quote of the year is from Obama,

    “With respect to the pledge I made that if you like your plan you can keep it . the way I put that forward unequivocally ended up not being accurate.”

    President Barack Obama, news conference, Nov. 14, 2013

  33. IRS comment on BO Pelini Foundation says:

    From the desk of a Internal Revenue Service employee Dallas branch;

    “Dear Supervisor,
    Looking at this complaint we received (form 13909) in the mail I can not determine if there is a problem with the Pelini Foundation. I know the Treasurer (a Regent on the University of Nebraska board) recently quit but since the records on the web site do not list any distributions in 2012 or 2013 it is hard to tell what is going on with the foundation. The foundation’s records are private, but their web site does show them receiving a big check this year, and we know the head coach took over control of the “Big Red Breakfasts” held in Omaha, putting that money into the Foundation.
    We notice their web site now lists 5 board members, having recently taken down Mr Clare and Mrs Jamrog from their listing of board members. Without a full audit, there is no way of knowing if any money at all was distributed.
    We may look further into the Foundation, but as of right now the IRS can not be the solution to Nebraska’s Pelini problem”.

    Fred from Accounting, IRS, Dallas division

  34. Kieran For Exec Director says:

    I saw a Facebook group today called “Kieran McCarney for NDP Exec Director”. That is a terrific idea for Democrats, bring some of that Tom White 2010 magic back!!

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