Who is to blame in #NE02?

First a quick Separated at Birth (suggested by longtime reader Chuck Isom), featuring…

Attorney General-elect Doug Peterson and former Husker Volleyball Coach Terry Petit!

Peterson - Petit - SAB 01

***

This morning we were CC’d on an email that Chip Maxwell sent to the local media in response to some radio discussions.
Here is what Chip sent:

I imagine the conversation has moved on, but in case it comes up again, I’m told there was chatter on KFAB blaming me for Lee Terry’s defeat.

If you want to “blame” somebody other than the candidate, it would be Dan Frei. I don’t blame Dan and no one else should. The seat is not anyone’s birthright. But it was Dan who exposed Lee’s vulnerability. The DCCC ignored that race until watching Lee spend nearly a million bucks in the primary to barely beat a guy with little name recognition and money.

Go back at look at the news account immediately after the primary. I wasn’t part of the story. The DCCC got involved, and then I took out a petition, because anyone taking an honest look at the numbers from 2012 and 2014 could see that Lee was on a fatal downward trajectory. He was losing ground among hardcore Republicans, never mind the general voting population.

I stood down and publicly urged people to join me in voting for Lee. I’m sorry he lost because conservatism lost a little more ground to the left in DC, and because in 2016 I would rather have faced incumbent Lee Terry in the primary election than incumbent Brad Ashford in the general election. Republicans who have secretly wished for this result are fools.

Lee used to crush liberal/progressive Democrats like Ashford (White, Thompson, Kiel, Simon, Scott). He didn’t lose because of me or Dan Frei or anyone else. He lost, even in the midst of a regional and national Republican wave of success, because too many members of the conservative majority in our district, conservative Democrats and Independents as well as Republicans and Independents, quit voting for him.

The seat might have been saved if the people complaining now had taken the opportunity after the primary to convince Lee to go out a winner and throw his support to me for the general election in order to rally the conservative majority in our district. That of course did not happen and the conservative majority did not fully engage this year. It will in 2016.

And here is my response to Chip:

 

Chip,

I don’t agree that you were to “blame” for Lee’s defeat.

But…

Had you and Dan Frei immediately, after the primary, done some sort of “unity” thing — saying you disagreed, but Lee Terry is the conservative candidate, and everyone should vote for him — it would have gone a long way towards shoring up conservative support. It may have meant fewer protest votes for Steve Laird. It may have meant more of those conservatives who voted for Sasse , Ricketts … and Ashford would have instead voted for Terry.

Instead Frei ditched the unity meeting, and you, Chip, set out to run as a third party candidate. That left conservatives who may have been on the fence about Lee to continue to grouse — and find you and Dan Frei as the outlets for their frustrations.

In the mean time, the Democrats saw your third party challenge and immediately realized the seat was theirs for the taking with a split GOP vote. Sure, eventually you backed off, but arguably too late.

And then Frei makes his half-assed “support” statement a week before the election? Please.

If you and Frei really meant that you wanted Lee to win, you would have immediately supported him after the primary, and nipped any dissent in the bud. Instead you let it grow and grow and fertilized it a little. And then when the house was covered in the vines of dissent, a meager effort was made to trim a few leaves with a rusty pair of clipper.

Toooooooooooooooooo late.

Look, if it was your goal to help Lee Terry win the race because he had the best chance to keep a conservative in the seat, you failed miserably. Same with Dan Frei.

But I suspect you got what you really wanted — an open GOP primary for 2016.

(And Eric Cantor’s loss in Virginia likely inspired you and others to figure you could wait it out and really take the incumbent down in 2016.)

Now does this mean you, or Dan Frei, are “to blame” for Terry’s loss? I think that may be a stretch.
Terry’s past close races, his dumb statement(s), the Minimum Wage early voters and a non-full Democrat candidate who couldn’t be easily tied to Obama were big, big factors.

But were you a contributing factor?
Hell yes.

I get what you, and Frei with his last minute ad, are doing.
You are trying to deflect any blame for the Republican losing in 2014, as you enter the 2016 race.

Good luck with that.
I guess we will see how long the elephant’s memory really is.

-Street Sweeper

**UPDATE at 1:55pm**

We offered Chip the opportunity to respond to our response.
And he took us up on it:

There are local insider Republicans who need scapegoats so they don’t have to own the consequences of their internecine fevers, but my petition adventure was irrelevant to the DCCC. The DCCC was gearing up for a major effort based on the primary result. Such high-level strategic decisions are made by people who don’t even know I exist. National Democrats might have been amused by and welcoming of my petition effort, but they weren’t making 6-figure financial commitments to the Ashford campaign based on my doings. That was in motion before word of my petition became public.

The problem here is that I had the nerve to point out how likely it was that Lee would lose the general election. I said to conservatives: Let’s be honest about this and make a bold move now to change the game in our favor. You and your crowd trashed it. That’s OK. That’s the rough-and-tumble of politics and I accept it. But now you want to come back and hang it on me?! Come on! Man up and admit that you and your crowd own this failure.

As for cultivating dissent and unity rallies and that whole line of speculation, the only place where that kind of stuff happens and matters is this blog and other places where political junkies congregate. Most voters aren’t marinating in the insider debate that happens here. They don’t care about Dan Frei or Chip Maxwell or Leavenworth Street or the DCRP or the state GOP. I don’t think most voters track or care about high-profile endorsements by the OWH or the governor or the mayor.

What happened is that the shutdown-check gaffe got more traction than it should have because there was no robust conservative persona and body of work to hold the conservative majority that carried Lee for 16 years. No endorsement or unity rally or other political theater can make up for it. In the absence of a strong conservative candidate, the gaffe sapped the energy of too many voters who used to vote for Lee – and did vote for Sasse and Ricketts – but couldn’t muster the will to vote for Lee again.

I was going to stay completely out of it. Some pro-lifers urged me to speak up, so I did. Lee sought a meeting and asked to use my statement and I said sure. I went out of my way to tell how I lost an election because conservatives stayed home. You say it was too little, too late. The statement was issued in mid-September. I’m not sure anything issued before Labor Day weekend would have mattered. Actually, I’m not sure my input mattered at any stage for the reasons outlined above.

That reminds me, you apparently were not impressed with Dan Frei’s endorsement ad for Lee. I thought the ad was rousing and strong and classy. The only problem with it was that it reminded us of what might have been. Remember that Lee ran ads making Frei look like a satanic minion of Obama and Pelosi. Give Dan some credit for rising above that.

I don’t mind if people have different opinions or think my views are dumb, but I do bristle at being called a liar. I have the advantage in that I know my own mind and heart. Actually, you know it, too, because I have shared the truth. I’ll do it one more time and then leave it alone.

I wanted Lee to win. I don’t like losing ground to the left. As for my self-interest, it isn’t served by Lee losing. I was convinced that I would beat him in the 2016 primary. I have been laying a foundation for that. Now the primary environment will be unpredictable and some allegiances might shift depending on who runs. More importantly, an incumbent Democrat will be waiting in the general election, with all the local and national advantages that come with incumbency.

This is NOT the environment I wanted, but life doesn’t always follow my script.

I hope you and others take my comments in the upbeat spirit in which they are offered. My goal is to clear the air for a brighter future. There is a conservative majority in our district, but we’ll need all hands on deck in 2016.

And we would just say, go back to our original response.

83 comments

  1. Anonymous says:

    You can’t have an honest discussion about this race without noting that a big difference in this race between races Lee Terry was able to win was the presence of a 3rd party libertarian candidate. Terry lost by 3% and the libertarian candidate took 5%.Except for a handful of pot heads, a huge amount of those votes would have either went to Terry or they wouldn’t have voted at all in this race. Now, at best besides the potheads the guys family and close friends were the only ones that actually voted for the guy, However, it gave a self serving out to claim they were voting their principles because nobody can claim virtue in voting for Brad Ashford. Ashford is one of the most unprincipled, untrustworty, self absorbed politicians Nebraska has ever seen.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Sweeper: Spot on response to Chip. They can’t have it both ways. The time to challenge Terry was in the Primary. The after-the-fact petition onto the ballot, then pull back then reluctant support too late in the game from Chip and absolute stone-walling from Frei did nothing for Terry. And now these guys think taking on Brad Ashford in 2016 will be easier than ousting a GOP incumbent in the Primary? What are they smoking? I want to take back the seat but if NE2 Republicans continue to bumble and fumble their way through Obama taking an electoral vote and now Ashford taking this seat, we’re not going to do it. There ought to be a “come to Jesus meeting” with ALL parties involved, Tea Party, DCRP, etc. and everyone get their heads out of their rears and arrive on the best Primary candidates (if they all so insist on running) and then come together like they do in the State races the day after the Primary. Sure it’s not fun but neither is giving up a seat to the likes of Ashford and the Dems making us look like a bunch of buffoons.

  3. Chuck says:

    Nailed it in your reply. Two years out and the supposed candidate is already taking no responsibility, heck maybe he would make a good Congressman.

  4. buck turgidson says:

    WTF is Chip Maxwell talking about?

    “If you want to blame someone, blame Dan Frei. But I don’t blame him, and you shouldn’t either.”

    There is a whole team of experts trying to figure out what the hell Maxwell is saying here.

  5. Patrick Borchers says:

    The tale of the tape is going to show that Ashford probably got a slightly lower percentage of the votes than did Ewing in 2012. As others have noted, the difference is that Laird got over 8,000 votes, roughly twice the margin between Ashford and Terry, dropping Terry from about 51% to 46%.. I worked hard for Terry and donated money even though I don’t agree with him on everything. A whole confluence of things helped sink Terry, as Sweeper noted. It will be no trivial task to beat Ashford in 2016. He can vote like a moderate Republican without much risk, because he won’t get primaried and being in the minority party chucking his vote toward things that will pass the House anyway won’t affect the outcome of votes. At his age, he’s not a long-termer in Congress so he’ll be more immune from Democratic pressure to fall into line if he wants to move into leadership positions, because he won’t be around long enough anyway. I think people were badly undervaluing Lee’s subcommittee chairmanship. He did a good job of keeping the pipeline delay on the national stage. He might’ve been able to convince the House leadership to use approval of it in the next hostage swap that will inevitably take place, probably around a debt ceiling increase. Anyone who convinced himself or herself that this wouldn’t have consequences wasn’t thinking clearly.

  6. Anonymous says:

    This guy’s ego is too great for Congress. Unbelievable that he’s on air anywhere when he’s running for Congress and that I against the law. You’d think lawyer/banker/candlestick maker would know that.

  7. Ricky says:

    How interesting reading about the in-fighting among local GOP…… but not really.
    I do have an observation though; taking anything Chip Maxwell Smart and Jim Rose say seriously will detract the Republicans from reality. Dan Frei actually ran so I do have respect for him.
    Lee Terry and Brad Ashford beat Lee Terry.
    Let us enjoy having a Democrat represent Omaha in Congress for a change before we worry about 2016. Omaha wants a Democrat to represent us. If it were not for us having Sarpy County in our district we would always have a liberal at the table for Omaha.
    All hail Brad Ashford! We wish him much success and a place in Congress for as long as he wants one!

    RFO

  8. husker007 says:

    in case Republicans haven’t noticed, you barely won a single vote east of 72nd street. After the inter-party blame game is over, maybe start focusing on the needs and concerns of people who live east of 72nd. maybe start to be more visible there, have house meetings, join neighborhood groups, propose solutions under than “trickle down” that addresses working class concerns, poverty, failing schools. Maybe start holding GOP meetings east of 72nd, get comfortable and familiar with community groups and community leaders more. Work with Mayor Stothert.

  9. I second that... says:

    A competent campaign could have made this closer. If we are going to be blaming Maxwell and Frei…. then you have to take a look at how Redstone and Ryan Horn sucked the campaign dry and ran one of the most lackluster campaigns Lee has ever had.

    They should have stuck to marketing. Lee needed professional help to have a chance at pulling this off and it was painfully obvious that was not provided.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Chip originally said – “The seat might have been saved if the people complaining now had taken the opportunity after the primary to convince Lee to go out a winner and throw his support to me for the general election in order to rally the conservative majority in our district.”

    If that statement isn’t blind arrogance and egomania, then I don’t know what is

  11. Anonymous says:

    Hey now let’s not cast (red)stones at Ryan Horn… without including boy blunder Kent.

    Moses in a mumu, man! Sometimes I wondered if they were even trying, though strong evidence suggests that they flat out weren’t at certain points.

  12. Reality Check says:

    Lee Terry is the only guy that deserves any credit for sending Brad Ashford to Washington. As Macdaddy pointed out any number of times over the past year, Lee wasn’t a conservative, he wasn’t a liberal or even a moderate. He was a reliable bobble head that did whatever the party bosses in D.C. told him to do. The real problem with entitlements in Washington D.C. isn’t Social security or Medicare it’s the damned politicians that all think they’re entitled to hold their seats while they ignore their real constituents. Lee demonstrated more than once by his words and actions that he thought he had been anointed to the position and didn’t have to do anything for the base or anyone else to keep his position. His strange speech on election night was just one more example of his demonstrable loss of contact with reality.

    The people on here who keep posting that Brad Ashford isn’t going to represent the conservative majority in the Second District and he’ll get voted out in two years are just as out of touch with reality as Lee Terry was. The fact is the Second is a relatively moderate district and Brad Ashford is going to have to do something really stupid not to have a huge advantage as the incumbent for the next couple of election cycles. If he’s still alive Ashford will probably be running for re-election in 2022 after the next round of redistricting after the 2020 census. At that point the slice of Sarpy County in the district is either going to be much smaller IF Nebraska gets to keep three seats in Congress, or the folks out in Valentine and Columbus are going to be part of the Second District because we dropped to just two seats. The conservatives are either going to become a huge majority or an insignificant minority.

    I’d rather see Nebraska keep three seas in Congress even if it means one of them is going to be solidly in the hands of the Democrats. In 2022 we’re probably a lot more likely to see a new Congressman named Nordquist than one named Maxwell OR Frei if we keep three seats. If we drop to just two seats I’m willing to bet there’s a good chance that the new Congressman doesn’t even come from Omaha. You probably better all get used to the idea that you’re going to be represented by someone with an agricultural background from a rural part of the state the next time a conservative represents Omaha.

  13. To The idiot Husker007 says:

    Quit drinking your Martinis 007. The DCRP does meet every Month East of 72nd Street. Furthermore our biggest community event has been held for over 2 decades at Elmwoood park every July 4th. We won the Mayor’s office with a lot of votes East of 72nd.

  14. The Irony Of It All says:

    Just think of it! In 2022 we’re all going to be holding our noses and voting to send Interested Observer to represent us in Congress.

  15. Macdaddy says:

    I think Sweeper is giving too much credit to Frei or Maxwell for this. If anybody deserves credit, it is me. Why? Because I am a nobody voter. I have no bullhorn, I have no pulpit, I have no voice other than my vote and anonymous postings on this blog. Voters listen to very few prominent people. Neither Chip nor Dan are people that voters listen to. They might vote for them, but they don’t listen to them. Who do they listen to, you might ask? They listen to me. Their quiet unassuming neighbor who doesn’t talk politics ever but when I do, they take it seriously. And there are thousands of me all around town. That’s how Omaha works. One day, the professional campaigners here will get it through their thick skulls. Lee Terry did not listen to me. Lee Terry did not care about the things I cared about. Lee Terry mailed it in. So he lost.

    So feel free to blame me. Me and Lee Terry.

  16. Tonic & Tonic says:

    To piggyback on the statement above: several of the DCRP’s more active, and it think a couple of our most likeable members, live east of 72nd.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Why do we care what this glory hound writes, thinks or promises? He’s cheese is so far off his ego’s cracker it isn’t in the same neighborhood

  18. Anonymous says:

    Does this guy’s employer…..a bank no less…..know this is going on? I wouldn’t want my “trust officer” cranking media stuff morning, noon and night.

  19. Interested Observer says:

    Seriously everybody, this was an extraordinary election for most Republicans. Just review the margins of victory for both Jeff Fortenberry and Adrian Smith. Then review how both Sasse and Ricketts did. The obvious, glaring exception to this near sweep is, of course, Lee Terry.

    Therefore, Lee Terry, and ONLY Lee Terry is to “blame” for his defeat.

  20. Deaf, Dumb and Just Plane Damned Stupid says:

    Ben Nelson read the tea leaves and figured out that his number was up. He faced the facts way too late for the Democrats to field a winning candidate, but at least he bailed out before the voters threw him out. Deb Fischer would have racked up several more percentage points if she’d been running against Ole Kickback Ben.

    As dense as Nelson was he looks like a pure genius next to Lee Terry. The Republicans didn’t even get the chance to field a candidate with a chance of winning. Lee’s ego forced voters to throw him out. Given the Republican landslide that took the entire country, it’s likely that another candidate with an (R) behind their name would probably be headed to Congress from Omaha if Lee had as much sense as Ben.

    Lee went out kicking and screaming right up to and past the bitter end. His lack of class in refusing to concede to Ashford on election night was just one more example of all the little things he’d done to alienate the voters.

    Nelson managed to snag a high paid position where he can continue selling out the American people to keep insurance companies making record profits. We’re probably fortunate that Lee went out the way he did. His glaring lack of good judgment is going to make it unlikely that even the most desperate of lobbying firms are willing to hire him. At least Lee won’t be feeding at the trough while selling out his former constituents.

  21. Anon says:

    #13-It’s because you like to pay taxes, You are the Boyle, Ashford, Jerram, Howard, dinosaur democrats. The people in west Omaha and Sarpy county especially the young, educated, that have moved out there have figured out that your hands are always on the wallets and purses. As with the mayoral election the recycled political teat feeders time is limited. Next they will figure out the under the radar Douglas county board tax machine. Live it up and don’t tax the condo residents out of your area because your voters can’t afford it on the whole. And for all of you older liv’s that claim your republican and taught Terry a lesson, as #7 says, you fools have lost a lot of capital for reckless lawmaker.

  22. Anonymous says:

    Maxwell seems delusional. A bruised Lee Terry came out of a GOP primary to find Chip Maxwell waiting as Brutus. Today Maxwell appears before us as Antony.

    Remember Maxwell’s “I have a plan to save the country”? Now it’s “I was going to stay completely out of it” and what seems delusional anger against “you and your crowd”.

    At least Frei ran as a Republican.

    Chip pulled a Brad Ashford by going Independent, and then did a Double-Brad by saying mid-race that he’d switch back later to be a Republican in the House while he was running against the Republican’s own House incumbent. Maxwell instantly made himself unappealing to nonpartisans and partisans at the same time.

    Many Nebraskans share Maxwell’s policies and principles without the megalomania, paranoia and thin skin. Chip’s getting what he wanted. People are talking about him. He seems somewhat unhinged.

  23. Anon says:

    There is a lot of promising candidates, Maxwell might do well in a east district office I don’t think shiftless will play well for a republican He’s dead meat.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Well we can take some measure of comfort in the fact that Ashford will be the oldest junior member of congress cacusing with the uber minority party….until he changes yet again.

  25. Husker 007 says:

    You are foolish if you think Republicans are doing enough east of 72nd street because you have held some meetings east of 72nd

    Read what Rick Santorum is saying about the need for a “blue collar conservativism”, or notice how Paul Ryan has been visiting the inner cities to develope new ideas to fight poverty.

    If the GOP is doing such a good job we did 95 percent of North Omaha vote Democrat, and you are losing South omaha fast! Not to mention Dems control majorities on MUD, OPPD, Metro community college board, the Douglas County board.

    Cry about losing cd2 for another week and the end the intra party blame game and then get to work east of 72.

  26. TexasAnnie says:

    First: I am blameless for Lee Terry’s loss.

    And second: Unless the R’s and D’s have changed election laws to further inhibit 3rd party participation there, the Libertarian candidate’s “success” in the 2nd congressional district will assure Libertarian ballot access in 2016. And that’s a good thing, folks!

    It is absurd to imply that Lee Terry “lost” because there was a Libertarian candidate on the ballot!!!

  27. Lee Terry lost touch says:

    Streetsweeper, you are way off base. The problem with Lee goes all the way back to the Bush presidency and his vote for TARP. When conservatives rebelled, the GOP establishment and the old school conservatives kept making excuses for Lee again and again. I spent considerable time showing people the economic score cards of various conservative organizations to prove my point that Lee needed to move to the right on more of his votes but it fell on deaf ears. Much of the Tea Party movement grew weary with Lee as well. Lee still hung around the Republican Mainstreet Partnership, an organization which has been persistent in attacking conservatives.
    Well, with the GOP having complete control of the House, conservatives seem to have agreed with Tom Becka that a Democrat Ashford in a GOP dominate House is going to be a very modest Congressman, so the time was ripe to ditch Lee.

    Too bad more conservatives did not feel that way when the chance came to vote for Dan Frei. Now it is going to be hard to dislodge Ashford. He won’t do anything brash and that is both a bad and good thing. So will the public have the will to unseat Ashford if he just comes off as a nice guy? IDK. Will Ashford have a liberal voting record when the GOP controls the agenda? Or will Ashford take the easy votes and side with the GOP on most issues? Hard to tell but if you value gun rights, Ashford as a Congressman does not sit well.

  28. Chocolate Chip says:

    Chip says he “bristles” at being called a liar.

    What is it when you ask people to sign your petition to be placed on the ballot but, at that very time, have already decided (and emailed a few people) that you are not going to run?

  29. Maxwell is absolutely spot-on in the accuracy of his overall assessment of this past election, and Sweeper is either extremely confused or is just plain lying to himself.

    Terry and his myopic band of GOP-insiders in 2CD utterly, and completely, own this loss.

    We have two years to get it together folks…you heads-up-your-own-rears GOP bosses had better wake up quickly or else Ashford will trounce you by an even larger margin in 2016 as guys like me refuse to ever again cast a vote for a RINO.

  30. Anon says:

    You are mostly right, that’s the point. You have the districts, OPPD declared incompetent by, of all USG, MUD = low rates-runaway fees. NO will never learn, look who their office holders are, you have done so well. SO has Gernandt held by the older residents, where is the push for hispanics, you may get caught spoon feeding them. The county board will turn over by the west push as your young flee OPS.

  31. J.D.S. says:

    “Terry and his myopic band of GOP-insiders in 2CD utterly, and completely, own this loss.”

    Every candidate puts their foot in their mouth during the course of a long and heated campaign; but a campaign isn’t conducted by one person or even a few campaign staff. When a Party and their candidate lose an incumbency, there is much blame to go around and all need to examine the roles they’ve played. The biggest question that needs to be answered is “Did those who had a role or responsibility conduct themselves accordingly, fulfill their obligations and deliver results?” If not, if those who had responsibility did not produce results, worked against the campaign or failed to meet expectations than they should step down and make room for those who can, or be removed. Accountability is in order at this time before any calls for unity for some yet unidentified 2016 candidate. To start with, the Republican Party of Douglas County needs it’s own performance audit.

  32. Anonymous says:

    One thing that is absolutely certain is that Vince Powers and the Nebraska Democratic Party had nothing to do with Ashford’s win. They did, however, have plenty to do with the losses of Domina, Hassebrook, McGill, Stewart, O’Hara, Sullivan and Crawford.

  33. anonymous says:

    Lee Terry lost because of Lee Terry. Lee Terry’s entitlement attitude was painfully on display in his election night election commission fraud accusatory tirade and in his next day concession speech. He literally went out in a self serving “kicking and screaming fashion.” He talked alot about his accomplishments but could not even give a thank you to his district office staff, campaign staff, volunteers and supporters. He also could not swallow his pride and admit that his fraud accusation was incorrect by apologizing to Douglas County Election Commissioner Dave Phipps.

  34. Anonymous says:

    #45 is exactly right. Lee Terry is an ass. I bet he doesn’t even offer to help any of his staff find other jobs. It’s all about Lee and Robyn. It’s always been all about Lee and Robyn.

  35. Lee should blame Lee says:

    Two examples of being beyond out of touch.

    Doing the ALS ice bucket challenge with Vote for Lee Terry stickers all over the bucket.

    His wife wearing her CBS Home real estate badge at her husband awkward speech. Shameles self promoters that do not even realize it is tacky.

    GOP should count their blessings it was Ashford and not Festerson

  36. antiassid says:

    “Rep.-elect Ashford vows to ‘change the culture by working together’ in D.C.” -owh

    Ashford will be 1 / 435th of the House, within one half of Congress, which is one third of the branches of government. That means, in theory, Ashford at best starts out holding 1/2610th of power… in theory. But in fact, in the House he has zero seniority, he chairs no committees and he cannot chair a committee even if he had seniority because he’s a Democrat in a GOP run House.

    Brad is gagged. If he’s not delusional, then his vow to change anything in DC is smoke he is already blowing up his constituents’ asses. As liars go, he gets points for proactivity.

    The House and the Senate both control every bill and resolution that goes to the floor for vote by filtering every one of them through committees, all of which will now be chaired by Republicans. Thus the exact number of “changes to the culture” that Ashford can get around Republicans is exactly ZERO. That’s how it works and Brad knows that’s how it works.

    That is exactly ow Reid ran the Democratic Senate, and how Pelosi ran the Democratic House. They gagged Republicans, leaving the then GOP minority members with nothing to do but gripe to the media and frankly they could do that from home. That is Ashford’s situation now. He’s one of many, with no seniority, adrift in a sea of power that he doesn’t have, and is gagged as a Democrat. But Ashford vows to change something in Washington, perhaps his underwear.

  37. Anonymous says:

    And another thing, antiassid, President Obama can whip out his veto pen and do to the Republican majority in the House and Senate exactly the same thing that they’ve been doing to him. Unless you elect a Republican to the Presidency in 2016, which is highly unlikely, and you maintain your majorities in both the House and Senate, which is also highly unlikely, you can only dream of the power you think you have.

  38. antiassid says:

    Liberal Democrat at # 49&50. Are you Liberal or Democrat? Ashford may force you to choose.

    You are correct. The President has veto power. And the houses of Congress oppose each other, and so on. Our Constitution exists, as you clearly imply, to make normal human differences that we’d otherwise murder each other over, instead be fought bloodlessly via Balanced Government, which means one part of government battles and impedes the others efforts, just as individuals do. This is cooperation only in the sense that the majority winners of battles fought electorally and legislatively win and then drag the losers along.

    Your words prove Brad Ashford is lying. For he vows to make everyone in DC work together in harmony. He knows it doesn’t work that way. He’s pandering to a lie his constituents want to believe. That doesn’t make it any less a lie.

    I just said Brad is a liar. I didn’t say I don’t like him being there.

    Lee Terry got some law passed. Ashford would like to get a lot of law passed. But as a Democrat Ashford can get no law passed. And that’s fine with me. I see most federal law as hammers swatting flies, some of which are imaginary flies. I like Ashford being as neutered as Street Sweeper’s cat.

    Brad’s calculated lying only means he’s fit for the job. Brad didn’t blurt out some Lee Terry-ish faux pas but calmly stated a purposeful lie to constituents who will swallow it whole. And he knows it.
    The fact that Ashford’s political nuts are cut off is good for Republicans and better for Conservatives.

    However, if Ashford now turns back into a Republican, that is horrible for Conservatives and wonderful for Liberals. For then he will have a Liberal GOP voice in a GOP house. At that point, Liberal Democrats need to pick a side. Either they are loyal Democrats who want a gagged Brad (D), or they are sincere Liberals who delight in having an ungagged Brad (R). Conservative Republicans often have the same difficult choice.

  39. Anonymous says:

    I can tell you are a Fox News watcher, antiassid (sic), because you believe the fantasies that you make up.
    By the way, Sweeper’s cat not only still has his balls, but he has three of them the size of grapefruits.

  40. Blame Game says:

    The title of this post says it all. Sweeper is looking for someone to blame for Lee Terry’s loss. It would be a lot more productive if he/she went in search of someone willing to take responsibility.

    Lee Terry had a sixteen year run. Over that period he should have been building a bigger base of support. It’s obvious that his real skill was in alienating more supporters with each election. The blame game turns into an eternal quest to find scapegoats. Ultimately Lee Terry was the captain of the ship. It was his job to get Frei and Maxwell on board. Lee needed to get the Young republicans to back him. It was Lee’s job to get everyone working on the same page. He could hire all the staff in the world, but in the end it wasn’t going to do any good no matter who Lee hired. Too many people had come to the conclusion that they were all just selling snake oil.

    Lee Terry should stand up and act like a man for a change. Take responsibility Lee. Stop looking for scapegoats and take responsibility for your own mistakes.

  41. CatchACluelessChip says:

    First, unless Howard Warren Buffet does not run in 2016 no one will be running against Brad Ashford. Second, no matter who else runs in the Republican primary Chip Maxwell will not be the primary winner. Third, and most importantly, Baby Buffet wins in 2016 no matter who the Republican candidate happens to be. Too much money, too much newpaper ink and presidential election year almost guarantees Baby Buffet success. That stunt of running a petition to get on the ballot was the death knell of Chip Maxwell’s political career and no amount of rationalization will undo that move.

  42. To Amnesia at #50 says:

    You conveniently chose to forget that the Republican House passed hundreds of bills dealing with all kinds of needed work, but your good buddy HARRY REID threw them in the wastebasket and would not allow those bills to even come to a vote in the Senate. So, in the words of a guy from
    New Jersey, sit down and shut up. So thank you #50 and Harry Reid for screwing America, then having the balls to deny it. And learn to live with this—Republicans will control the House, the Senate, and the White House in 2016.

  43. Going out with a whimper not a bang says:

    Boy oh boy did partisan Republican’s leave their jobs in an unprofessional and whiny way.
    Lee Terry had a less than gracious concession speech, bizarre and unworthy of a 7 term Congressman.
    Senator Scott Loserbaugh of the Unicam got out while the lobbying prospects were good, then whined about how tough he had it at at the end. And by the way, the OWH called him “witty”; there are a few adjectives I can think of for the heavy tipping Senator, but “witty” is not one of them.
    How funny the GOP thinks it’s entitled to a House seat from D2, and how classless they go out.
    Nebraska can do a lot better.

    ricky from omaha

  44. Down with OPPD, yea you know me says:

    Big Loss for Anne McGuire. She ran a horrible campaign. It seems Jeff Lux will reform the mess OPPD had made for the ratepayers

  45. Anonymous says:

    Anne McGuire refused help when it was pointed out to her that she was in a death spiral. She said she had a campaign manager and a consultant. Hmmm. She was nowhere to be found and not even an email address listed. For all the money spent, Lux should have had a landslide w/ all the union money he amassed. He was not responsive to those who tried to contact him several times. That doesn’t say much.

  46. Anonymous says:

    Democrats appear weak. But don’t expect Republicans to grasp what they need to do for 2016. Republicans are already misreading this 2014 election’s meaning.

    Many say this was a national sweep for Republicans. Was it really for Republicans? That suggest voters want what the GOP is selling and disregards that voters may just be angry at Obama for not making socialism work better. But even that may give voters too much credit. For Obama ran on hope and a smile and today Obama is an uninspiring unsmiling grey haired old crank.

    Partisans are so focused on principle/policy they become blind to voters demanding personality. For example, Republicans liked Reagan’s principles but most voters voted for his personality.

    Republicans have a habit of thinking voters want to join the GOP flagellates in seeking moralistic law and painful belt tightening that parallels the pain Liberals would impose in other directions. Average voters aren’t into pain. They aren’t so complex or invested. They want leader personalities not principles.

    Republicans who think the 2014 election signals a mature electorate seeking GOP principles will probably put up for President in 2016 some unsmiling gray haired old crank. Then Hillary wins.

  47. FarWestOmaha says:

    Did the wave election actually hurt Terry? it seems like everyone has deep down gotten tired of Lee the last few elections. But, like SS is always harping on, didn’t want to send a Dem to DC because they’d be a sure vote for Pelosi, Obamacare, etc. Well, now people were comfortable enough knowing that the GOP would have a huge majority in the House. So they figured now would be as great time as any to get rid of Lee because Ashford will be so hamstrung in the house that he can do little to no damage.

  48. Lil Mac says:

    MD and UW, funny stuff. 66, too true.

    Reagan was our oldest President yet he used humor and was no crank. He was a Democrat union president, ever aware he was presenting an image, and he dragged GOP partisan leaders along behind him. He inspired Americans. Compare that to a youthful hopeful Obama who has since joined the ranks of cranks like Hillary, McCain and Romney. They all lack comedic timing and then wonder why they aren’t beloved. Anyone here in this blog can dryly express the same principles and policies as they do. That isn’t inspiring leadership.

    These candidates are mostly baby boomers; a massive demographic bolus of wrinkled human flesh passing down history’s alimentary canal. What comes out in 2016 will be ugly and old. But as Reagan proves, it doesn’t have to be such an un-lubed colonoscopy of a President. And Republicans had better get a grip on this and damn quick because so far the winner of this 2014 GOP Sweep is old crank Hillary. Her communitarianism is to Obama’s ham-fisted liberalism what cyanide is to a mild laxative.

    You will note that I compare politics is a toilet. Twas ever thus. You vote only once every two years. You suffer a broken toilet several times each day. You shouldn’t swallow anything it offers. But you do need it to work.

  49. A BOLD faced lie says:

    One more person taking credit for the kill on the Terry race. Jane Kleeb says SHE is to blame for the defeat of Keystone XL Pipeline champion Lee Terry. Terry lost because JANE at BOLD put him out the door! In summary: Jane Kleeb kicked Terry out, and Dan Fwei and ChipperMax got Brad Ashford elected! Jane, you’re having delusions of grandeur here. This was 100% Fwei and Maxwell’s doing. All your picketing at Terry’s office and hate mail against him fell on deaf ears. Even the unions came to Terry’s aid. Get ready to hurl your barbs at Landrieu as she pushes a vote in the Senate for KXL to save herself.

  50. A BOLD faced lie says:

    Heartfelt apologies: I shortchanged Redstone Advertising the credit they deserved for the Terry loss. They deserve way more credit than Jane Kleeb. At least they made a lot of money blowing the race. So THERE Jane. You’re just not, “all that.” You had a lot of help.

  51. Anonymous says:

    Jane Kleeb had nothing to do with the defeat of Lee Terry. Every real democrat knows this. She is not like by DEMS either. Jane Kleeb only cares about Jane Kleeb. She is very much like Deb Fischer in that respect. After the pipeline gets rejected by the President next year, we all wonder what her next money making scheme will be.

  52. A BOLD faced lie says:

    Now Anonymous, don’t you think Jane deserves SOME credit? Hey she is a REAL Democrat! Her hubby ran for the US Senate AND House. They own a business that runs strictly on environmental tax offsets for crying out loud! Most importantly….w84It….Jane has the ear of ultra-lib Billionaires Tom Steyer and Dick Holland!!!!! Not only is she a real Democrat, she has rich liberal friends.

  53. Bravo antiassid! says:

    Well said! “That is Ashford’s situation now. He’s one of many, with no seniority, adrift in a sea of power that he doesn’t have, and is gagged as a Democrat. But Ashford vows to change something in Washington, perhaps his underwear.”

    Just remember, it will be Ashford and his “25 friends” who will all be trading dirty pairs of underwear!

  54. Anon says:

    Jane will love it when both houses pass the KXL pipeline in lame duck sessions. The Senate will do it to try to keep Landrieu’s seat and the President will sign it.

  55. Anonymous says:

    Jane thinks a few New Energy yard signs and a “kind of” Voter Guide, as she described it on KFAB this morning did Lee Terry in? Where is the investigative media? Just how much did Bold spend on its political outreach if it was responsible for unseating an incumbent Congressman? Or more importantly, where’s the story on the Green money Scott & Jane gobbled up via their favorite Administration and where has it gone? How did two people arrive in Nebraska without jobs and a few years later buy farm land south of Hastings? Anyone? Anyone? Didn’t think so. Thanks OWH, LJS, Nebraska Watchdog, etc. etc.

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