Friday, December 17, 2010


This morning the LJS’s Don Walton facilitated Ben Nelson’s hit on Jon Bruning over earmarks, who makes them and who gets them.

Interesting stuff, and feel free to argue about that issue.

But the real kicker came in the bottom half of the article where former state GOP chair, and 2006 GOP Senate primary candidate, Dave Kramer took shots at Bruning, Don Stenberg and (poor) Pat Flynn.

Kramer, once again, stated that:
“...there's a significant component of people in the state who believe there might be a better option.”

Kramer wouldn’t be saying this if he didn’t have SOMEONE in mind for the gig. We are guessing that Kramer isn’t speaking of himself (though it’s possible, in theory).

And he wouldn’t be taking shots at Bruning’s positions against Nelson -- defending Nelson -- if he didn’t have someone else in mind.

So who is he backing? Who is the mystery candidate?

Mike Foley? Or Fortenberry?(more on him below)
Deb Fischer (more on her below)?
Mystery candidate #4?

Whomever it is, Kramer is setting the stage, and we are guaranteed a GOP primary BATTLE.

Probably just what Nelson wants, but then again, we need these sorts of elections. It’s like Clemenza said in The Godfather,
That's all right. These things gotta happen every five years or so, ten years. Helps to get rid of the bad blood.
Except of course that they tend to make for bitter politicos. But, ah whatcha gonna do? It’s democracy.


And just to add on, The Hill had a list of GOPers who voted against the Tax Bill, who may or may not be interested in higher office in 2012.

This time it was Jeff Fortenberry listed. The Hill said,
"...Fortenberry has shown little public interest so far in challenging Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.)."
We always read these things with a bit of interest, because the author is usually basing their statements on...something.

In this case, again, it’s our belief that Fortenberry isn’t interested unless Nelson drops out of the race.

And then the OWH followed up on our post (snark) about Kay Orr . Interestingly they also noted that Rex Fisher says he is NOT running (something we had mentioned). And they also listed Bob Bennie of Lincoln as out (we never heard he was in).

The next name who is potentially interesting is state Senator Deb Fischer of Valentine, who we have discussed here and there.

When her name first came up, she seemed like such a random long-shot that we gave her sort of short shrift. But as all the other names keep popping up...and then back down...Fischer has the potential to interest some people. (We would note that NRL’s Julie Schmidt-Albin quickly came to her defense on our first post. She would have some immediate organizing ability.)

But again, a lot of this depends on whether or not Nelson stays in the race. If he is in, someone like Senator Fischer could make a three or four person race VERY interesting.

Where if Nelson gets out, then there may be two or three other heavy-weights that give it a whirl, and she could have a harder time of it.

Oh, and there’s the State Auditor Mike Foley aspect as well, which would throw in an extra monkey-wrench.

Loads of excitement, kiddos.


And then Joe Jordan posted on his blog that Dave Nabity had been vocal about running for Mayor to the Recall Committee peeps, a while back.

We heard this a while ago as well, but don’t think it is that big of a deal.

So Nabity wants to run for Mayor? That’s shocking? Again, are we to think that the MSRC is just a altruistic bunch who are willing to have “Anyone But Suttle”? Come on.

Now maybe it was a bad idea, politically, for Nabity to say it out loud. But otherwise, let’s stop pretending that no one is, or should be, thinking about it.

And who might they be? Hal Daub? Dan Welch? Pete Festersen? Brad Ashford?

Could be.

Once Judge Bataillon gives his decision, the floodgates may well open.

Have your raft ready.


Cash is King said...

doesn't David Kramers wife raise money for candidates??? Follow the money, David's heating bill in his Regency home must have gone up.

Anonymous said...

Bruning said he'd welcome Kramer along with Stenberg "and other failed candidates for the U.S. Senate."

Bruning was taking a poke at:
1. David Kramer
2. Don Stenberg
3. Pete Ricketts
4. Kay Orr
5. Pat Flynn

Should be an interesting Primary.

Anonymous said...

So if Deb Fischer has the support of Julie, would it be logical to assume that Fischer will follow the lead of Julie's other picks by spending her time and the governments money picking legal battles that cannot be won?

Optimism in vain said...

Festersen please!

Anonymous said...

Bruning is a pompous you know what...evidenced by his comment.

Publius said...

Bruning should learn that he is running for a job where you are supposed to be a statesman, and his campaign barbs are better left to subordinates.

New Gaurd said...

Say what you want about brunings comment but you know he's right.

Anyone that can't see kramer is just trying to drum up business for his wife is walking blind. We have campaign finance for a reason and this is transparent.

Nick Naylor said...

its Guard... But... you are right.

Anonymous said...

Let's just wait and see who files by the end of Feb.

Anonymous said...

These comments about the Kramer's are silly. 1) Has anyone considered Kramer's are true 2) Kramer's wife is NOT worried about drumming up business.

Nice try. Better luck next time.

New Guard said...


aka David Kramer

That hit a little to close to home for you didn't it? You decide to put yourself in the Public light, prepare to have rocks thrown at you.

Whoever anointed you the 'Standard Republican talking Head' Must have not been involved in NE politics lately.

You are old news, yesterdays garbage and the only way you can feel even somewhat important is attacking the most promising senate candidate we have ever had against EBN.

Go home Kramer. Let the rest of us that still volunteer for the party worry about these issue.

Anonymous said...

Why does Ashford's name keep coming up? He is a bag of wind!

Anonymous said...

Kramer is spot on. We can do better than Bruning. There's just something about the guy that doesn't seem Senatorial.

Anonymous said...

Bruning got manhandled by Nelson in that piece. And why the flamethrowing against fellow R's, Jon? Couldn't you say that you yourself are a failed Senate candidate when at one point you hyped it, ran it, and then dropped out? Talk about a Napoleon complex....I certainly hope there is a better R candidate out there willing to give it a shot. If Bruning gets the nod, he will be mopped up by EBN in the press. Bruning is full of soundbites and photo-ops, but very, very short on substance. I can't believe he opened himself up so much to get belittled and pushed around by a wounded Nelson when Nelson's favorables are already under 50%. This goes to show that Jon does not know how to leverage the media and is vulnerable when it comes to the press. Not a good showing out of the gate, Jon.

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to see the matchup of the failed AG vs. failed Senate

Gop Insider said...

Just remember kiddos. The dems and Jane Kleeb would rather see anyone face Nelson other than Jon Bruning.

I wonder why?

Where are all of the other candidates coming out of the gate? At least the gutless wonder - don stenberg tweeted about it.

Nick Naylor said...

Kramer is a sellout to Ben Nelson. His own political ambitions are so strong that he is willing to side with Nelson on earmarks?

C'mon. If I was thinking about running I would distance myself as far away as I could from this nut job.

Anonymous said...

I thought I saw Jessica M and Jane Kleeb having 'coffee' the other day.

Hmmm... Anything for a paycheck right ladies?

Anonymous said...

Bruning got manhandled by Nelson in that piece.
Bruning got manhandled by Walton in that piece.

Fixed it for you

Anonymous said...

Looks like Chuck Hegel's team is still out there.

Anonymous said...

Deb Fischer led the effort to raise the gas tax. Her candidacy is DOA!!

Anonymous said...

No, Ger...for a political analyst you sure don't know much about politics.

Bruning got manhandled, period. Nelson poked at his ego, Bruning responded, Nelson knew that he would respond and Bruning got dilly-slapped again. He laid out logic, Bruning bit and walked into it, and he got hit numerous times. Sure, Walton reports it....the bottom line is, Nelson knows JB better than JB knows JB and used it against him. And it all matters on how the 3rd sees it----your typical Neb. voter doesn't see it as manhandled by Walton or Nelson. They see it as Bruning got manhandled.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Shoe Salesman said...

David Kramer's comments must be stifling Bruning's DC and national fundraising. Keeping the doubt alive is the best way to weaken Bruning. I have no idea what Kramer's motivation is, and he's not credible on any topic - except of course NE republican politics.

Street Sweeper said...

What you typed was deleted -- repeatedly -- b/c it's not a comment, doesn't contribute to the discussion, and you or others have typed it approx 100 times.

Julie Schmit-Albin said...

12:32 LB 1103 was enacted Oct. 15th and, unlike what usually happens in new areas of abortion law, has never been challenged. That was our priority legislation in 2010.

Anonymous said...

Julie, your continued support for all the faux pro-life officials who did not support the pre-nadal bill leaves you no real credibility amongst those who really are pro-life.

Duck Pearhead said...

I see Mayor Subtle declines to resign because - by his math - 92 percent of Omaha supports him since only 8 percent signed the recall! We HAVE to leave him in, people! The way he addifies, we'll have a $50mil surplus by the time his term is over.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
No, Ger...for a political analyst you sure don't know much about politics.

Bruning got manhandled, period. Nelson poked at his ego, Bruning responded, Nelson knew that he would respond and Bruning got dilly-slapped again. He laid out logic, Bruning bit and walked into it, and he got hit numerous times. Sure, Walton reports it....the bottom line is, Nelson knows JB better than JB knows JB and used it against him. And it all matters on how the 3rd sees it----your typical Neb. voter doesn't see it as manhandled by Walton or Nelson. They see it as Bruning got manhandled.

4:08 PM, December 17, 2010

LOL, well, someone doesn't know much about politics but it isn't Ger. The fact of the matter is that virtually no one reads Don Walton. By the time the primary election rolls around, no one will remember what Don Walton wrote. Anonymous dude who thinks he understands politics, I have news for you: The typical Nebraska voter will never ever see this hack job by Don Walton.

It's funny that you would condescend toward someone else and suggest he doesn't know much about politics and then make such a stupid comment yourself. LOL.

Anonymous said...

Kramer is beginning to remind me of Chuck Hagel. And that's no compliment. Shut up Dave. Go have another twinkie or something and keep your mouth occupied with something other than talking about politics, m'kay?

Julie Schmit-Albin said...

6:08 I realized it was exactly one year ago on this Friday night that Ben Nelson & Tim Becker took a break from their intense "negotiations" in Harry Reid's office to call me and pitch the "new" abortion language on Obamacare. I didn't buy it; does that redeem me enough or are you one of those who support prenatal care but oppose all other pro-life legislation?

Anonymous said...

JSA - 45,000 Americans died since one year ago this Friday because they didn't have access to healthcare. What you're telling us here is you would have been content for that to go on indefinitely until Senator Nelson had the healthcare bill modified enough to meet your own personal standards?

Julie, we know you were in a tough position. You couldn't have supported health care reform legislation no matter how it was written because you would have alienated your entire Republican base and they would have tossed you aside and found someone else to be the pseudo-nonpartisan spokesperson for pro-life issues.

Galikanokus said...

For all of you neophytes on here, DK need not prove himself to you nor the motives of his wife. Having said that, it is most likely that the candidate DK is referring to is Sen. Fischer. Not sure she has the star power but the ties between her and DK couldn't be closer.

Anonymous said...

Slow Week at NNN...

All of 4 people actually offered a comment about Vile Kyle's 3 articles.

Becoming irrelevant?

Be Still your Bleeding Heart said...

Anon 1:30am
2,200 Americans died since you posted your asinine claim. How many of those were due to your unsubstantiated claims?

What I love most about you ‘lefties’ is that you never allow a lack of empirical evidence and an inability to demonstrate a causal relationship to stand in your way of making ludicrous claims in an effort to ‘guilt’ the rest of America into throwing more of our tax dollars at your latest and greatest social re-engineering project.

Anonymous said...

Why isn't there more push for Jean Stothert to run for Mayor? Seems like fresher blood than Nabity, Daub, loved by R's, and could get enough D's in midtown because she's an articulate woman. She is the future for the R's in Omaha - - anyone who can't see that is blind - - so why isn't her name mentioned more?

Anonymous said...

Anon 1:30- and just how many people died in the past year died under Dr's care? How many died due to Dr's errors? How many died due to wrong medications? You get so sanctimonious on the Health Bill and don't acknowledge the patient has some responsibility as well as the attending Dr's.

The mere opportunity to have a Dr at your beckon call doesn't assure a better outcome in all cases. This is the same flawed thinking which holds to pouring more money into education while we get WORSE results.

Go do some research and get see what you think about it then.

Anonymous said...

45,000 Americans died since one year ago this Friday because they didn't have access to healthcare

and 93.2% of all statistical claims were made up on the spot... an increase of 1.6% of the previous year, and close to the all time maximum of 93.4% in 1998.

Of course, that was an El Niño year.

Political Novice said...

Anon: 10:08 - It was my impression that Jean Stothert took herself off the list of potential candidates should the recall succeed by stating she had no desire to fill in. Of course how many times have we heard someone in a government office say one thing and do another. There is no doubt in my mind that should she decide to run for mayor she would be a formidable opponent - fresh, little baggage, articulate and easy on the eyes. That being said I am not sure I would vote for her until I knew her positions a bit better and who would run against her. I definitely think she will be a factor in Omaha politics for years to come.

But what do I know?

Don Kuhns said...

Are any of you conservatives upset that Congress is about to increase taxes on millions of the poorest American wage earners?

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Why do your fellow Democrats, who control the Congress and the White House, hate poor people?

Anonymous said...

Julie Schmit Albin has changed her story. She originally said Ben and his staff called "as a courtesy" to tell her the language of the bill. She got really really upset because they wouldn't let her have special access to conversations with other Senators in discussing the language. Now she's saying they were actually calling to pitch it to her. So was it a courtesy as your press release said, or did they actually pitch it to you first? Are you having a hard time keeping your self-absorbed stories straight?

And JSA, until you can actually criticize Dave Heineman directly and by name on the prenatal issue, you're nothing but a partisan GOP hypocrit and, to use your words, you're proving you are willing "to throw unborn babies under the bus" for your personal political goals. Are you greiving the death of those babies that have died and been reported on in local news because of Dave Heineman's prenatal care policy? Must not be if you can't say Dave Heineman was wrong.

Anonymous said...

If Republicans really believed in less government, then they'd quit trying to legislate against reproductive rights and sexual preference. Perhaps the time they're spending on these issues could be spent studying simple math, which they don't seem to grasp.

--Omaha Independent

Always Someone Else's Fault said...

Anon 1:50,

See 'Bleeding Heart' and 'Gerard Harbison' above before posting your blather.

There is no way to link the Gov's policy and lack of a free governmental service to the death of a child.

If we accept your argument then it is more 'logical'to blame the mother for a) coming here ILLEGALLY and b) not using birth control.

Nebraskan's are fair-minded, but they simply aren't going to pay for the world's pre-natal care.

Joe Carpenter said...

Let Jesus Christ care for the children. He certainly could care less whether they are "illegal aliens" or not. Too bad the Republicans can't be more like Him.

Anonymous said...


So you don't think that Jesus Christ can work through those we entrust with our government to get the job done? I see your point. If those running our government claim to be Christians, yet they don't do as He taught us, what then can we say about them and about the people who elected representatives like them?
I'm sure that Jesus would have us take care of ALL the children, regardless of their nationality and regardless of the cost. After all, the real cost is not in money, but in what becomes of us when we die.
So keep refusing to care for the children and face an eternity in hell.

Anonymous said...

Jesus? Who brought Him into this holy mess of a discussion? What do you guys think this is Christmas? Peace on earth? And? What would Jesus think of Jon Bruning? No doubt there's a coaster out there somewhere with His endorsement under Jon's photo. Marketing. That's what it's all

Don Kuhns said...

Hmph. Didn't think so.

Anonymous said...

Today America became a lot closer to a "More Perfect Union" DADT is no longer the law of the land. The reactionary forces of evil have failed again in their pursuit of bigotry. God Bless America, Home of the free land of the Brave.

Anonymous said...


Dontcha hate it when no one will bite on your trick questions?

Anonymous said...

For liberals, you can only mention Jesus if it is regards to what they want to label as "the poor" and their own particular solutions to the problems of poverty. Mainly more government programs. If you happen to guestion the effectiveness of governement programs be prepared to be accused by your liberal secular friends of no doing what Jesus would do.

thank you, but I don't get my theology from Stephen Colbert, K. Oblermann, Rachel Maddow, etc....

Anonymous said...

anon. 5:32. What bible have you been reading? Your clueless. It is that simple. Jesus was the greatest thing that ever happened for the world. Remember what he said about the chances of the rich getting into heaven.

Anonymous said...

Bruning was on a plane to DC on Wed morning. Fundraising? NAAG meeting? Does anybody know?

Julie Schmit-Albin said...

Anon 1:50: Sen. Nelson called me during a break from Reid's office, yes, as a courtesy because he told me it wasn't a call where I was going to be able to bring my Fed Legislative Director into the conversation. He was telling me what his new abortion language was and since we spoke for over half an hour with me raising one question after another, I would call that a "pitch." It was the bare minimum he had to do to be able to go back to Reid and seal the deal, say that he had talked to his pro-life folks back in Nebraska first. I believe he called the Archbishop of Omaha on Saturday morning before he went to the floor with Reid. Since you're Anon I can't verify what side of the camp you fall in re: abortion. Usually the people who dog me about our endorsement of the Governor despite his position on LB 1110 are the last ones on earth who would support any other pro-life legislation. NRL supported LB 1110 and we will consider supporting any new effort to resolve the issue this session.

Street Sweeper said...

No link policy.

TexasAnnie said...


Will you and NRL consider supporting FULL DD funding when the budget ax falls next legislative session? You know the DD population just can't "get a job" to feed themselves! And you also know that when the entangled budget negotiations ensue, the DD won't have any defense from their corner. I know that in the past NRL was a one issue organization. But then you took up fetal cells as clients. And now you support pre-American babies of illegal immigrants. So I'm hoping you can extend your charity to DD Nebraskans. They have no one else to speak for them... Pleeeze, Julie!

Anonymous said...

Jean Stothert is the future of Omaha politics?! LMAO

Husekersolon said...

When Julie says we should "throw unborn babies under the bus" does that mean she'sagainst saving the life of the mother in ANY case?

Julie you are a bully and your 100% standard for your personal agenda on the health reform law was arrogant and your turncoat attitude on Nelson is atrocious. You've embarassed Nebraska, not Nelson. He got you 99% of what you wanted, offered you unfettered influence and access and you betrayed his trust and confidence. you are not an honest broker and neither is NE right to Hate.

Don Kuhns said...

12/18 4:45,

There was nothing at all tricky about my question. I was simply wondering if any local conservatives were aware of and bothered by the fact that Congress is raising taxes, something they supposedly abhor. Specifically, the bill replaces the Making Work Pay tax credit with a one year reduction in the payroll tax, meaning that any childless person with an income under 20K(or couple under 40K) will get a tax hike.

The mainstream media has mostly ignored this fact. Even more surprising is the fact that conservative talkers haven't mentioned it, given that Democrats are indeed still in control of Congress.

I would really like to know how rank and file conservatives feel about this. My suspicion is that many of you dislike the bill because it doesn't raise taxes on the poor enough. Correct me if I'm wrong.

Anonymous said...

Jon Bruning calls other Republcans "losers" because they ran for the Senate before and lost. But so did Nelson. Bruning's loser comment is silly.

Bruning requested a federal half million bucks in 2009, got it, and now says he didn't want it. That seems at best a lack of foresight.

Poor don't Pay Federal Income Taxes said...


While I don't pretend to speak for conservatives, I'll bite.

Only in D.C. can the eliminatation of a tax credit (refund) be considered a tax increase.

As of the 2010 tax year, 47% of Americans paid NO Federal Income tax. Those in the 20K bracket are clearly in the bottom quintile of wage earners and fall into this category.

So, if you are asking if I'm sad that part of the federal taxes that I pay are no longer being given to a family that pays no federal income, the answer is NO. That is not a 'tax credit' it is welfare.

I'm all for helping others, however, and am more than happy to donate to places like the Salvation Army, Good Will, or a local church where they can find assistance. These agencies are more efficient than the government and 'charity' is not something that can be 'impelled' by a government. The Founders referred to that as tyranny. Obama calls it ‘social justice’.

I'm not sure if that adequately addresses your question (or if you were really looking for something given the swipe you take at conservatives)?

ttg said...

Don Kuhns wants to be corrected if he is wrong. Yes he is wrong but he cannot be corrected. Sorry. Some people are stuck in nitwitdom and arguing with them just helps spread the nits.

Julie Schmit-Albin said...

Anon: 10:06 I didn't know holding elected officials accountable was considered "bullying" nor did I realize Sen. Nelson was capable of being "bullied." He got us 99%? Try a complete back flip from Nov. 09 when his good amendment failed. I know Nebraska pro-lifers have a long memory. I just hope those who don't vote single issue also have long memories.

Jean said...

7:47 AM 12/19: at some point, 10:18 AM should realize I will never hire him in any capacity. It didn't work out previously.

7:47 AM 12/19 said...

Jean - Good thinking. He is clearly delusional. You're not too popular in Midtown.

Anonymous said...

JSA - Given the fact that 45,000 Americans die every year because they don't have access to healthcare, and also given the fact that your on this blog bragging about how you were able to hold up this bill, for what sounds like several days, can you really be considered someone who protects like when 123 people died everyday that you delayed this bill? I'd be careful about the implications of what your boasting about online.

Also, since Mark Fahleson and Pete Ricketts are up for reelection of party offfice next month are you going to rally against them because of they helped kill the pre-nadal bill? Do your job Julie!!

Anonymous said...

Anon 8:00: Try, just try, one time, spelling pre-natal correctly. Please. Oh, and the 45,000 number pertains to people who don't have health insurance, not people who don't have healthcare. You don't need health insurance to get healthcare. Of course, it is a totally made up number, but whatever. On the other hand, 100,000 people die every year from medical mistakes, so all-in-all, it's probably better to not have health insurance and stay away from doctors.

Anonymous said...


I think most conservatives who were against the tax cut compromise were against it because it gave Obama a glimmer of hope to get re-elected, not because it raised "taxes" on poor people. Plus there was another $350 billion of pork loaded into it.

I have a question for you though: Are you OK with all the time the current lame Congress is wasting on things not related to job creation during this holiday season with the unemployment rate being stuck at almost 10% for over a year and a half?

Anonymous said...

@ 10:52

Google "Harvard Medical Study Links Lack of Insurance to 45000 U.S. Deaths."

But then again what does the Harvard Medical community know when you can live in a Right Wing Fantasyworld, where facts and empirical data are for "elitists."