Friday, September 10, 2010

Nelson responds!

Democrat Senator Ben Nelson took the time to respond to his critics today -- this time via the “Letters to the Editor” section of the LJS.

Nelson is still -- STILL -- trying to wash the stench of the Cornhusker Kickback off his lapels.

It’s not working.

This time Nelson tries to make some sort of argument that those mean GOPers intentionally tried to tarnish the good name of the University of Nebraska athletics with the sobriquet, “Cornhusker Kickback.”


Well here are two items to consider:

1) It’s the Cornhusker Kickback. Not the University of Nebraska Kickback.
It’s all in the word, “Kickback”. Aliteration, you see.
If it were about nunchucks, it would have been Nebraska Nunchucks.
Get it?

2) Of course the REAL issue of the Cornhusker Kickback -- the $100 million in Medicaid funding exclusively for Nebraska that was in the original deal -- was neatly summarized by Greta Van Susteren (that we will cut and past from our previous analysis):
Greta: "When was the first time you heard...that Nebraska would get ... a $100 million provision?"
Nelson: "Probably during the discussions on how we would get an opt-out."

Greta: "Who came up with the idea that $100 million would go to Nebraska? Was that your idea?
Nelson: I think it was the idea -- someone's idea to put it in.
Greta: Someone?
Nelson: There were various people involved at various times."

Greta: "Is (Majority Leader) Senator Harry Reid wrong when he says you wanted this (the Cornhusker Kickback), that you got it for yourself?"
Nelson: "I don't know what he means by 'got it for myself'".

Greta: "Whose idea was it for the $100 million? ... By whom?"
Nelson: "I didn't draw the bill so I don't know the answer."

Now keep in mind that during the rest of the interview Nelson was pulling out quotes and floor statements and articles (hence the reading glasses), and was trying to be as specific as possible.

But...not on the CRUX of the Cornhusker Kickback.
Not on the $100 million.
Not on who asked for it or who came up with it.

Now you can draw your own conclusions on this.
So who came up with Cornhusker Kickback that embarrased Nebraskans and angered the rest of the country?

Who do you think? (Hint: He likes to write Letters to the Editor.)


So 3rd District Congressman Adrian Smith has a second opponent -- Independent Dan Hill.

Well, we think he’s an “I” anyway.

See, we purviewed some of the signatures Mr. Hill sent in, and on 8/25/10 a certain “Scott Kleeb” of Hastings signed on .

Now why would Kleeb, the former (losing) Democrat nominee for both the House and Senate want Mr. Hill’s name on the ballot?

Hmm...could it be so that Smith’s vote is split?

Would there be such a...purely political reason behind Senor Kleeb’s signature?

Gee, imagine that.


Oh, and someone had brought this up a while back, so we thought we’d state the facts, in case you were wondering:

Congressman Smith’s voting percentages rank him 30th out of the 435 Members in the House of Representatives for the 111th Congress (according to the Washington Post).

And, also, Smith just earned National Right to Life’s sole endorsement for the 3rd District race.


Remember to take a moment out of your day tomorrow to remember those who perished on September 11, 2001 and those who continue to fight for our freedom.

Happy weekend and Go Huskers!


Macdaddy said...



If we mean GOPers were trying to tarnish the Husker good name we would have called it the Bugeaters' Kickback.

One Out In The Third said...

Ben is not only a politican...I see he is a great dancer in Greta's interview. He has a future on "Dancing with the Stars." We should probably see him on the show in the 2013 season.

Re: Scott Kleeb's petition signature...Jane is having it analyzed as we speak and will likely contest it. I am sure the "Neb Progressives" will take it to court and have a full-blown investigation of Hill's campaign.

Gina said...

I can't believe that Nelson would feel the need to respond to an indivdual voter's letter to the editor. Sensitive about this, are we Ben? When is going to understand that no one buys his lame explanation no matter how many times he repeats it, especially the self-congratulatory crap about him being a whistleblower. And to say this is derogatory to the University of Nebraska Athletic Dept? Just when I thought he couldn't get any more ridiculous he pulls that one out of his @*#.

Anonymous said...

Isn't there an old saying about it being better to keep one's mouth shut and be thought a fool rather than to have a letter in the Journal Star today and remove all doubt?

Anonymous said...

Nelson always had a horrible tenancy to respond to letters when he was running against Chuck Hagel. I'd write a letter in support of Hagel and critical of him and sure enough he'd be on my voice mail challenging my points. He'd be best to let it go and improve his leaderhship skills depending on whatever side of the fence they landed.

Jamie said...

Yeah, well, all politics is local I guess. He's gonna have to do a TON of community outreach if he plans to run for reelection, but honestly, so much damage was done from that one vote I don't think NE will send any Democrats to the Senate in ten to fifteen years. It's a shame for the NDP, too. Nelson was a fairly moderate senator before this, he could have had a chance in 2012.

Shoe Salesman said...

Nebraskans are funny. Sure the Cornhusker Kickback proved embarassing but mainly because the state's political leadership decided to embrace that framing instead of fighting for Nebraska. They actually piled on the Nebraska bashing in order to score political points.

But everyone complains about the cost of the health care bill but when Ben Nelson got you a carve out - you rejected it.

People like to accuse Ben of taking a bribe - but if the state never got paid where's the kickback.

Nebraskans, especially those GOP trolls on this blog are the only ones talking about the "Cornhusker Kickback".

Interesting rading the comments on the LJS story from last week where most people figuresd out that the Gov has been playing political games since day one.

"We want help." he said.
No we don't" he said later.
Oh wait, we need that money" he wrote after it was taken away. And he's had his hand out ever since. He still complains about the federal stimulus package that he uses to cover his budget shortfall.

Ben Nelson has delivered hundreds of millions of dollars to NE to help Deficit Dave and Johanns before him balance the state budget which kept them from raising taxes. Both complained every step of the way.

NE better pray nelson gets re-elected because otherwise your state will have zero voice or influence in Washington. Without Nelson, NE could change its name to "anonymous."

Anonymous said...

Nebraska Watchdog is reporting that Suttle has dismissed former weather guesser Ron Gerrard. And no, he can't go back to Channel 42 unless he wants to move to Davenport, Iowa.

Anonymous said...

Scott Kleeb is now an Independent. You mean an independent like Tom White!! I thought Scott supported fellow Democrats. So once again the Kleebs screw over another Democratic candidate. That's mighty Bold of them!

Right Wing Professor said...

Nebraskans, especially those GOP trolls on this blog are the only ones talking about the "Cornhusker Kickback".

First 10 google hits on 'Cornhusker kickback'

Fox News
The Hill
Politics Daily
Harvard Crimson
Libertarian Party

Not a GOP or a Nebraska link in there. I'll give you this Shoey. When you're wrong, you're way wrong.

Anonymous said...

Well, RWP, Shoey is just a jackass. That's all you really have to remember.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm, any Dems that were hoping that the Republicans in Nebraska's 2nd are disenchanted with their Congressman and that will make them stay home in November, should be wishing for something else these days because it just isn't going to go down that way.

You see, folks that actually vote regularly, know the importance of not splitting the ticket. that's probably why the Independent trying to backdoor the ballot in Omaha could not get his signatures.

Republicans in the 2nd, obviously, intend to hold on to this seat.

As far as the 3rd? Even with a slight split ticket, Smith will be safe.

Anonymous said...

lol, Suttle really thinks it's the Messenger, not the message?

Anonymous said...

Looks like rainy weather for Ronnie although Mayor Jim still taking on water as well.

Who in their right mind allows their boss to announce a Bike Trail Coordinator in the same month recall drums grow louder?

Someone should have thrown themself on the mayor like he was a live grenade.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm....interesting. Dan Hill says he's an "Independent", but he's still a registered Republican. Isn't that illegal to claim your party affliation is one thing on the ballot, but it's actually another? As for Scott Kleeb, any registered voter, regardless of party, may sign the petition.

TexasAnnie said...

Of course Nelson is a jerk! But I really don’t get your idea that the Cornhusker Kickback “embarrassed” Nebraskans, Street Sweeper. I have inquired right here at your site whether Nebraskans are embarrassed or ashamed about bringing folks to your state for the sole purpose of your “economic development.” You know what I mean: making tax abatement deals with Fortune 500 companies to get them to move families to Nebraska. But when you get us there, denying needed special education services and/or services for developmentally disabled adults, all the while spending hand over fist for your own “best and brightest” at the Cornhusker university system. Nelson’s unscrupulous action on the new heath care policy was no worse than his economic development policies while governor. Here’s why: USING PEOPLE AS A MEANS TO AN END, RATHER THAN AN END OF THEMSELVES IS UNETHICAL!

Certainly readers at your site, nor you, have yet to respond with any words of regret for having done and continuing to use non-Nebraskans in this manner (under both Nelson and Heineman) each time I have presented my grievance. Do you even understand standard principles of ethics? Anyone? Anyone???

This issue which I continue to raise is more than a mere paradox. And while I agree that Nelson has treated you shabbily, it’s no worse than Heineman is doing today. For example just Thursday past, Heineman released a $220 thousand “report” from Battelle in conjunction with university “officials” indicating a need for more tax abatement, business matching funds and university spending. Heineman calls the report a roadmap for ever more “economic development” policies. I thought y’all were broke up there! How come there’s always money to spend on “economic development” and when do you expect that development to occur? I’m thinking that at least until the state breaks even with what has already been spent on development, you probably shouldn’t be spending more during a recession… (Note: at the time I was packing to leave Nebraska, y’all were already in the hole, as projected by your own Dept. of Revenue, for the next 30 years or so!) And you know that businesses are unwilling to start up in your own town, Omaha, without property tax abatement (tax increment financing), even though their infrastructure needs and demands on city and school district services will be immediate.

YOUR TAX POLICIES ARE UNJUST and you have too many holes in your tax base. That’s your revenue shortage problem. How come y’all aren’t ashamed when your Republicans act like Ben Nelson, i.e. shifting your public costs to others?

TexasAnnie said...

P.S. And Adrian Smith is a jerk too! I knew him when he was a state senator and still remember HIS voting inclinations...

Anonymous said...

TA: Nobody held a gun to you and your spouse's head and forced you to move to NE. Did you move from TX or another state? The victim mentality is real old You already boasted that you retired and living on a lot more acres than in NE so sounds like you made your fortune in NE, despite not getting all the services you felt entitled to

One Out In The Third said...

Buried deep in the bowels of our local foot-wide newspaper this morning was a story of how "most" Nebraskans are against the proposed Keystone XL oil a 2 to 1 margin.

The World-Herald News Service says the results of the poll will be released Tuesday. The poll was commissioned by none other than Bold Nebraska...The Nebraska Wildlife Federation and the Nebraska Sierra Club...go figure.

I wonder if the respondents were card carrying SEIU/ACORN members/goons?

Anonymous said...

Bold Nebraska is a failure. No impact on Nebraska elections and against the pipeline that officials from both parties are against. Very effective use of Dick Hollands money Jane.

Anonymous said...

Anon:10:44 Not to worry, Blather Nebraska is going to launch a Voter Guide. Since they aren't a PAC it will be intersting to see how they will advocate for Meister and White in it.

Anonymous said...

Polls are as credible as their source regardless of sides.

However, even Senator Mike questions this pipeline as well he should and good for him.

Anonymous said...

Gives a whole new meaning to, "fun with Dick and Jane".

Funny, weren't the original FWDAJ criminals and con artists in their community, too?

TexasAnnie said...

Well Anonymous 7:50 p.m. of yesterday you have made some unfounded assumptions, but I'll let them stand uncontested.

However, in the dialectical mode of Stephen Colbert, I shall take your limited response as affirmation that my knowledge of Nebraska's unjust tax code is correct! (If it had been incorrect, you would have objected.)

And since none of the following commenters of today have objected to my characterization of Nebraska's tax code, we may all move forward with a common understanding that Nebraskans (or at least 'Leavenworth Street' participants) do not object to corporate welfare, only people welfare. Right?

--->I'm truly trying to help you out of your current taxing degradation...

rwp said...

Since Texas also uses tax increment financing and other such tricks, one wonders why Annie chooses to inflict herself on us, rather than on the state in which she actually lives.

Corporations are not people. Corporations collect tax, they don't pay it. A corporation subjected to a high tax levy will simply pass it on to its customers and, if the tax renders it uncompetitive, move elsewhere. Talking about 'equity' in corporate taxation is a sign of economic illiteracy.

Anonymous said...

Thanks RWP, it's always nice for us political hacks on here to get a perspective from someone who doesn't vote.

Anonymous said...

I saw the Goober campaigning on campus before the game on Saturday. I wonder how that's legal? Heck if he was doing so it must be. Not like how I heard when Tom White was doing it on Offutt and was told to leave.

Wonder if the University would even do anything about it if it were illegal?

Jamie said...

Goober and $toj both campaigned... but have you seen Goober's HQ in Lincoln? Sketch place. Oh well. Slow news day in NE.

TexasAnnie said...

I already told 'ya: Nebraskans took from me my belief in America. And I want my belief back! Don't worry about Texas. We aren't feeling the recession here. We don't have to bribe Fortune 500 companies to stay here. And we don't worry that our youth will take their very publicly subsidized college degrees and flee the state. Sure, we've got some taxing inequity going on and the governor does have his slush fund. But if you would check with your Dept. of Revenue there, you might learn some practical ideas about your economic circumstance.

Folks here don't EXPECT taxing inequity. We inhibit exchanges of corporate campaign contributions for specific tax abatement; we frown on our government picking corporate winners and losers. If you think corporate taxes are too high, lower them, but do that for EVERY corporation. Or, repeal corporate taxes outright in Nebraska and test whether your 'theory' of tax abatement works! (You already know it doesn't, 'eh?)

Y'know, RWP, your failure to consider 'equity' in theories of taxation is a sign of ethical retardation...

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:09, big difference. State Race v. Federal Race. You would think that an amazing trial lawyer like Tom White, with ALL of his qualifications such as construction laborer and house painter, would be able to understand a simple law about not campaigning on Federal property.

ESPECIALLY, since he was informed of the law over a year ago when he wanted to be listed as a "Candidate for U.S. Congress" for the Bellevue Chamber dinner.

Since he couldn't be listed as a candidate for Congress, he didn't even show up-ask anyone that was in attendance.

Tom White is a liar and a bully. Ask just about anyone that has been forced to work with him.

Right Wing Professor said...

Corporations in NE pay about a 4% top tax rate. Individuals pay 7%. In the interest of 'ethics' Texas Annie raises the corporate rate to 7%. Corporations leave. Everyone is poorer.

The liberal mindset in a nutshell: the way to equalize opportunity between the rich and the poor is to make everyone poor.

TedK said...

As usual, RWP is stuck in an ideological prison where everything is black and white. By your logic we should just lower the corporate rate to 0%. All other states would have to follow as corporations are great at playing one state against another. Your theory says this should result in lower prices for all (and tax increases for real people). Unfortunately as history has shown the result is higher CEO pay, higher corporate profits, and the highest amount of income inequality since just before the Great Depression. Only simpletons believe that raising corporate taxes forces corporations to raise their prices by the same amount. Liberals don't want to make everyone poor. They want to make the system fair so those in power can't rig it to their benefit.

TexasAnnie said...

Shame on you, RWP, for substituting the premiss being argued! I wrote: "If you think corporate taxes are too high, lower them, but do that for EVERY corporation." Your rebuttal: "Corporations in Nebraska pay about a 4% top tax rate," does not have the SAME meaning, does it?

Whether it's 4% or 7% or nothing, all corporations in Nebraska should be treated equitably. That's the axiom concerning 'ethics' which I submitted and obfuscation on your part does not render me a "liberal."

For the most part I overlook the ignorance of Nebraskans regarding all the holes carved out of your tax base. The information is not universally known and since your two major newspapers (OWH % LJS) utilize their own tax abating opportunities, it's unlikely they will broadcast the information boldly. Heck, even when I was seeking it, I had to do backflips around the misinformation being fed me by my UN-representative, Pam Brown, while she "served" her corporate voter base in the Unicameral. *(Our relationship ended the day she called me and said I had "broken her rules" by questioning the misguided information provided. She said she would no longer "assist" my quest for taxing knowledge. Thus she became my un-representative.)

But YOU, RWP? Any self-respecting scientist should not have demonstrated the glaring logical blunder you have demonstrated here! I urge you once again, look at some of the Dept. of Revenue publications which you, as a Nebraska taxpayer, have been bankrolling. Some clever people work there and they're keeping tract of assumed revenue growth. Y'all should be questioning TO WHOM the Nebraska Advantage Act offers it's advantage...

Hi!, TedK. You're a welcome, clear thinking "liberal" from my point of view. As with liberals, libertarians want a system of taxation that is FAIR. It is my understanding that the Greens want that too. But NOT the Republican conservatives, huh?

TedK said...

Thanks TA. I could probably be more of a libertarian if the vast majority of U.S. citizens who are Christians actually practiced their faith. Until then we need government to provide a safety net for those who need it, especially through no fault of their own. Capitalism is the best system there is, but left unchecked power moves to where the money is. Government is the only check we have on large corporations that are in essence running this country.

Anonymous said...

Why would someone vote for Dan Hill when Adrian Smith has a perfectly fine voting record? Dan Hill is like the "mystery box" who says he would vote the same way as Smith, but why are some willing to take that chance? Hill has questioned Smith's leadership and says he would sponsor and write new legislation. I don't want any more legislation - get a clue Dan Hill!