So it’s January 2nd, 2014, and we’re still writing about 2013. You got a problem with that? That’s such 2013 thinking! You probably thought that while you were “twerking” and reading Newsweek. Well this is 2014! And this is the way we do things! So read on! (And we’ll give you a little 2014 at the end).
As many noted, this was pretty much a lock.
A few things about Stothert, who defeated incumbent Mayor Jim Suttle in May, to become the first female Mayor of Nebraska’s largest city:
- U.S. Senator Deb Fischer had lost the city of Omaha by 15% just 6 months prior
- Stothert had a relatively limited political history prior to her run for Mayor
- The Republican clobbered Suttle by 15% — in a city that has a 10% majority of Democrats
- Stothert also demolished her GOP opponents (sorry guys) in the primary, taking 32% in the 5-way race
- She was the first mayor elected without police or fire union support in 40 years
Stothert has continued to make waves and is establishing her political power.
We see her as a force to reckon with in years to come.
That makes her our Pol of the Year.
So who else?
Who else indeed!
We went back and read every post from 2013.
And what was the overriding theme?
“I am NOT going to run!”
So who comes in a gigantic 2nd place for the also-rans for PotY?
Those who decided NOT to run — for Governor, for Senate and for House.
Let’s take a look:
In the Gov’s race, where Governor Dave Heineman canNOT run again…
Well, there was Rick Sheehy — whom Heineman had already endorsed! — who quit his own office of Lt. Governor before quitting the Governor’s race.
Then there was the thought-to-be front runner Speaker Mike Flood, who had dropped out in December 2012, was thought by MANY to be back in the race (not just us, kiddos) then announced in July that he was definitely out.
Tim Clare – out before he was in.
Jon Bruning – out in early January, then making it clear he was definitely out in back in in October
Dave Kramer – out before he was in in February
Bob Krist – made some in moves, before saying he was out
Charles Herbster – a relative unknown who was thought to have been a force, before dropping out and throwing his weight behind Beau McCoy
Matt Williams – who? yeah, he was out before he was in.
And then the Democrats too!
Remember when Steve Lathrop did his statewide listening tour? Yeah, guess he didn’t like what he was hearing.
And then Annette Dubas, who had racked up an impressive (for a Dem) list of endorsements dropped.
(And of course, we wait to see what Bob Kerrey thinks before we etch Chuck Hassebrook’s name in…)
But it wasn’t just the Gov’s race, of course.
The biggest drop-out of the Senate race was…Senator Mike Johanns himself, who decided not to run.
And then while many jumped in, don’t forget that really no one was making a move until Governor Dave Heineman made his intentions known.
Then Jeff Fortenberry made his decision right after Heineman dropped.
Former Creighton Law Dean Pat Borchers was in, then out.
Rex Fisher was out before he was in.
And for the Dems, we still don’t know whether Dave Domina is in or out — and we assume that Brad Ashford is out.
And then there was Nebraska’s 2nd District House seat.
Democrat City Councilman Pete Festersen was definitely out.
Oh unless he is IN!
Or unless he is out.
Yeah, that’s what we thought.
Other fun from 2013?
Remember Omaha City Councilman Chris Jerram’s Jean Stothert t-shirt?
Many,many of you discovered it here on L.St.
And then here’s a bonus question:
Quick, NAME Nebraska’s Lieutenant Governor!
Click here for the answer.
So that was 2013. Fun stuff eh?
So shall we dive into 2014? Sure, why not.
So the OWH did another glowing article on Tom Brewer’s primary run against 3rd District Congressman Adrian Smith.
The story notes that Brewer has lived in the 1st District for 20 years.
Brewer says he has no beef with ANY of Smith’s votes.
Doesn’t list a one.
BUT, he says that Smith “parrots” the GOP line.
And Brewer says he’s qualified to run for Congress because of his military record — says to hire the “best qualified”.
OK. Let’s just note that Smith is a member of the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee — considered to be the most powerful committee in the House.
And note that Brewer touts his military credentials, and has lived in the 1st District for TWENTY YEARS — but doesn’t seem to have an interest in serving in the District that houses STRATCOM.
And then, Brewer goes on about Smith only following the party line — but in arguably the most significant party-line vote of the year — the Ryan-Murray budget vote — Smith went AGAINST the leadership.
(Note that, again, 1st District Congressman Jeff Fortenberry voted with the leadership.)
And then today Fort says that ObamaCare is here to stay, while Brewer says that repeal of it would be his focus (a position we are sure he shares with Adrian Smith).
This isn’t to say that Brewer should have primaried Fort.
But it would have made more sense.
At least as far as how Brewer is positioning himself.
(Oh, and while we understand that Brewer didn’t want a “desk-job” in the Army, we would just note that a Congressional seat doesn’t exactly involve hand-to-hand combat either…)
This should be a fun year, politically, yeah?
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Thanks and Happy New Year!