#NE02 themes and debates

First, to start your weekend out right, a litte Separated at Birth, suggested by some Fantasy Football league that my Facebook app keeps suggesting…

Zack Poff - Jordan McGrain - SAB 02

“Zack Poff” and former Nebraska GOP Executive Director, Jordan McGrain!


The National Republican Congressional Committee (that’s the NRCC to you) has a new ad out hitting Brad Ashford.
See it here:

So if you really want to hear what the themes are for a campaign, listen to the candidates’ closing statements in the debate. It is there, when their opponent really can’t or won’t respond, that you hear what they’ll be running.

In last night’s Nebraska 2nd Congressional District debate, you heard Brad Ashford close with his, “I won’t vote to shut down the government and then use the pseduo-expletive,’Dang Straight!'”

And Terry closed with what we see the NRCC using above: Ashford has voted to raise taxes.
Over and over and over and over again.

This really shouldn’t be a big surprise to 2nd Distrcit voters. Ashford is a Big Government guy who believes that Government should be used to Change Your Life. He is a promoter or “Social Justice”, you see.

And what is Social Justice? Well it’s doing good things (you Neaderthal)!

And what sort of Good Things?
(If you have to ask, you Just Don’t Get It.)

And who decides what things are “Good”?
The Government, dummy.

And how will we implement those Good Things?
Well, we will all have to pitch in and pay our “fair share”, and by the way if you disagree with that concept, we will bring the full force of Government down upon you.

In any case, Brad Ashford is a “Let’s Do Good Things with Government!” kind of guy.
That is just who he is. And probably the real reason he became a Democrat.

And now he wants to show what he can do to, er FOR, you in Washington.
But he’ll never, ever utter the words, “Dang Straight!”
So you have that going for you.


As far as the debate itself went, we will say this:
The OWH’s Mike’l Severe is severly underrated (see what we did there?).

Robynn Tysver may be a decent writer (who occasionally “misrepresents facts”, particularly regarding this here blog), but what she is not, is a debate moderator.

She mismanaged time, cut off Terry and Ashford, let them drag on too long, asked incredibly detailed questions and then asked for 15 second answers.

And on more than one occasion asked them to speed up their 30 second answers to 15 seconds.
On little things like Foreign Poliocy.

The end result was a forum where little “debating” occurred, there were almost no follow-ups and the whole thing was rushed and disjointed. Hopefully the C-Span viewers in Ohio were entertained.

What did we learn?
Brad Ashford is playing it very, very safe.

He said two or three times, “I agree with Congressman Terry.
He favors troops in Afghanistan, airstrikes in Syria and bombing Iran (maybe).
On an issue where he could have simply concurred with every other Midwest lawmaker, he deferred to Terry’s intelligence breifing.

At the end he finally took a shot at Terry on “war on women” stuff, which we think portents another DCCC ad. And of course he closed with refusing to be Dang Straight about anything.

But Ashford still came off as a guy who thinks he is ahead, and wasn’t going to strike out by swinging for the fences. He likely believes his victory lies in not coming off as a nice guy, while slowly chip-chipping away at Terry.

It’s time for a change” is hardly, “I’m the best man for the job.

And said by the guy who came in a distant 4th for Mayor of Omaha.


We want to follow up on the recent Senate debate brouhaha, mainly to, once again, show what happens in the media.

You may have seen that there was a U.S. debate in Hastings. Democrat Dave Domina and the other guys were there, but Ben Sasse was not. And THAT was the news story, in multiple sites. “Where was Ben???”

The Grand Island Independent’s Tracy Overstreet opened her story that “Only three of four U.S. Senate candidates attended a Sunday night debate…“. Joe Jordan at Nebraska Watchdog noted, “Ben Sasse accused of ducking issues again“.

Well, here is the closing paragraph from Yankee Lover, Don Walton, in the LJS after the actual last debate:

Sunday’s debate concluded a series of four forums and debates among Senate candidates.

(Emphasis added.)


Sasse said, after he won the GOP primary that he wanted to have more debates than Senator Deb Fischer and New Yorker Bob Kerrey had. And Sasse proposed 4 debates.

And we remember the political storm and newsstories THAT set off.
Only FOUR!??! Why, we should have 6, or even a half dozen!!!!

No? Not so much?

Right. So for the GII or Joe Jordan to give any creedence to the Democrats demand for more debates at this point — without noting that adding another debate at this point would be political malpractice for any campaign — is journalistic Three-card Monte.

See, the press loves these things because, 1) they get to ask the questions, 2) they get to seem smarter than the candidates, and 3) they get something new to talk about. Hey, we get it. The Beast needs to be fed. But The Beast also needs to be honest with its readers in their follow-up on being bummed that the overwhelming favorite is not going to chuck himself into a partisan forum.

“Partisan?” you ask?

Did ANYONE (in the press) note ANYTHING about the dude, Butch Hughes, who sponsored the “Great Debate”?
Yeah, he is a super anti-Keystone XL Pipeline guy —  and guess who the anti-Pipeline lawyer is —  who also is battling the Gubmint to get rid of…fluoride in the water.

But as Kevin Thomas of KLIN notes, the Hastings debate organizers, by putting up a Ben Sasse name card, microphone and empty chair, and their helpers in the press…

“…went out of their way to make it look like Ben Sasse had stood them up, when they knew full well that he wasn’t going to be there!

The crazy thing is, the press figures it can continue to get away with this.
To just make stories up, give them the slant they want, and run with it.

Sure there are places liek this blog, or KLIN where you can get the whole story, but unfortunately, you just won’t always find a link to Leavenworth St. following the GII story.

Be sure to check back often.


  1. Anonymous says:

    “Did ANYONE note ANYTHING about the dude, Butch Hughes, who sponsored the “Great Debate”?”

    Yes actually, yes I did. Did my mentions not count because they’re not written on a fancy fish wrapper?

  2. 40-Year Registered Republican says:

    My conscience won’t allow me to ever again cast a vote for Lee Terry.

    Folks, we are at a cultural crossroads in this country. The Big Government Barbarians are at the gate; and frankly, they have been largely winning the hearts and minds of undecided voters for the better part of twenty-five years. As a Constitution-Loving-Conservative, I expect more from my Congressman than just showing-up and voting however he or she is instructed by GOP Party Leadership.

    Call me an idealist, but I also expect my elected representatives to embrace, protect, & promote Liberty – Lee Terry has failed all of us in this regard. From voting For the NDAA (National Defense Authorization Act), to voting For the Patriot Act, to his several thoughtless & insensitive public comments over the past couple of years, Lee Terry has proven to be little more than an embarrassment to the people of Nebraska. Thanks in part to Lee Terry’s votes in favor of the NDAA & Patriot Act, our government now has unprecedented legal authority to spy on its citizens and can indefinitely imprison any American Citizen without due process (all they have to do is label you or I as an enemy, without the burden of proof)…Thanks Lee!

    I could go on and on about how Lee Terry has been completely ineffective at actually selling or influencing those who are on the Political-Left to support common-sense conservative ideas and ideals, or about how he dutifully towed the GOP Party-Line by voting for the $700 Billion bank bailout in 2008 (forever a stain on our nation’s history); but you see, these acts of incompetence and injustice pale in comparison to Lee Terry’s vote to grant the Federal Government almost unlimited power over its citizens via the NDAA & the Patriot Act; a level of power that is straight out of Orwell’s “1984″ and that completely flies in the face of what our Founding Fathers stood for.

    From my perspective, based upon several decades of life experience & observation, I am convinced that Lee Terry is a Big Government Bureaucrat who has proven time and time again that he will vote for any bill that he feels will help to prolong his political career, and it seems to me (and to many others who have been paying attention) that political survival is Lee’s paramount ambition in life.

    I will vote for Brad Ashford in November, and if he turns out to be an Anti-Constitutionalist Far Left-Winger as a Congressman, then I will support a Constitution & Liberty Loving Republican (if there is one running) in the 2016 election.

  3. RedStateHusker says:

    Look at this liberty Republican voting for the most anti-liberty candidate in the race. Fitting, isn’t it, that disdain over purity would become animus to vote for the candidate MOST contrary to your principles.
    I’ve said it once and I’ll say it a million times: we had a primary. Dan Frei almost beat Lee Terry because he had strong support from people like you (#5). But he LOST, fair and square, and now we have a General Election with a choice between someone who will vote for all of President Barack Obama’s agenda, and someone who will vote to repeal and replace Obamacare, build the Keystone XL pipeline, and continuing introducing Balanced Budget Amendment bills.
    Lee Terry has made plenty of mistakes. We know this all too well. He got sent a message in the primary. Now it’s time for constitutional conservatives and liberty Republicans (like myself… I’m a Rand Paul Republican remember!) to suck it up and make sure that Omaha isn’t represented by a statist Democrat!

  4. anonymous says:

    Since when did voting for Lee Terry, The Man Without a Pulse, become a vital blow for liberty? Terry is the best we can do? I don’t know whether to throw up or fall asleep. Terry is better suited to be general manager of a multi-state car dealership or president of Prep. Surely the DCRP can find somebody – SOMEBODY – I don’t know, who as actually accomplished something, with others, with the thinnest modicum of an active personality it can put up for office. Where is that person?

  5. Would that be the same Butch Hughes from the Hastings area who was a self-anointed mover/shaker in the Tea Party movement that washed across the Midlands a few years ago? If so, the guy seems terribly conflicted in his political convictions. Or maybe he just likes seeing his name in print.

  6. Asking Again says:

    How much longer will America put up with muslims beheading American citizens—even now in Oklahoma? Talk statewide politics all you want, but the unrestricted beheading of Americans is what is really on the minds of Nebraska citizens.

  7. Ricky says:

    The Ashford – Terry debate did offer examples of the differences between the two. If you believe in the minimum wage and a pathway to citizenship and not have a boner for repealing Obamacare then vote for Brad.
    Good points made by Ashford for pointing out Terry wants to privatize SS, and of course the zinger at the end where he pointed out he would not vote to shut down the government and would not take a paycheck if it were shut down. That statement should be the nail in the coffin for Terry, as well it should be.
    Also for those of you who think the Omaha World Herald loves the liberals, note it was Joe Morton of the papers D C bureau, who broke the story about Terry’s statements. And Morton usually leans toward blowing smoke for the GOP, so kudos to Morton for this story.
    So I think Ashford looked pretty good, but no knockout blows for either side.
    And since Brad is ahead by about 5 points, it is looking pretty good for him, and Terry is about ready to lose his job.

    ricky ricky ricky from from from Omaha

  8. Anonymous says:

    So its Brad Ashford? My goodness.

    And all this time I thought his name was “Bad Assturd”.

    Still, its the same guy, different party, again.

  9. Macdaddy says:

    Terry can easily win this. Get the GOP to show that they are serious about controlling gov’t spending, decreasing government regulation, overturning Obamacare, and protecting the sovereignty of the US by enforcing the immigration laws already on the books. Simple, right? What are they waiting for?

  10. wishingitwasntso says:

    Nice thought. But how exactly is Lee Terry going to “Get the GOP” to do anything? Brad Ashford certainly won’t. Its one guy out of 435.

    “Terry can easily win this”. Where? In Second District? Most 2D voters eagerly went for Obama six years ago and he wasn’t hiding his liberalism. They are disappointed only because he failed to efficiently deliver the largess they were promised. hey don’t think the largess is wrong, they love it, they crave it. Most aren’t like you.

    “What are they waiting for?” They, Republican leaders, are waiting for American voters to grow unaddicted to largess. That won’t happen. Most voters say they prefer freedom and say they want less regulation, but if they get one bit of federal freebie, they will vote for that no matter how much thier bit of gain is their neighbor’s pain. That is measurable.

    The GOP will retain the HOR and it will take the Senate this year. But that’s just the normal vote tide in a president’s second term. Overall, the USA is toast. Unlike China’s unfettered free enterprise with minimal political freedom, America is hamstrung by its people being free to vote away free enterprise.

  11. To -- 40-Year Registered Republican says:

    Do you hate the United States that much?

    You are willing to risk our liberty to Brad Ashford…and then to 2nd District Democrats for the next 10 years? Do you think that these future congressmen or women will protect liberty? Or even Free Markets?

    You are worst than a non-thinking Democrat.

  12. anonymous says:

    Are you willing to trust your liberty to a door stop? Because that’s what Mr. Terry is. No need to elect anyone. Hang a sign saying “Nay” on the NE2 door. There, done. No need to elect or pay anyone. No pesky staff. No phone or email. Why bother?

  13. Exercise in absurdity says:

    We don’t now have a free market. All votes in hope of getting a free market are absurd. And not just because people are addicted to federal freebies, but even more so because politicians are addicted to power. For as long as our federal representatives possess power to tax us and spend money on us irregularly and inequitably, we cannot vote our way out of this national morass. Lee Terry needs to go. Brad Ashford will next be needing to go…

  14. Macdaddy says:

    The OWH should have showed us a picture of a cornfield full of cars that run on unicorn farts and magic. How many people walked or rode bicycles to the anti-Keystone concert? Bunch of hypocrites.

  15. Interesting Observation…. says:

    Regarding the TV spot: So who and when will the connection be made that Pete and Brad agree on NE Sales Tax issues more than Pete and Lee?

  16. Cropdusted says:

    My hearts almost bleeding for “40-Year Registered Republican”. Almost but not quite. “My conscience won’t allow me to ever again cast a vote for Lee Terry.” Oh spare me. Puhleeeez. If you’re a pro-abortion RINO vote for Ashford. If you’re a conservative, vote for Terry. If you’re the idiot you sound like, vote Ashford.

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