United States Senate

Term: Six Years

Candidates: Deb Fischer, Bob Kerrey.

Why you should care:
- Each state is represented by two senators serving staggered six-year terms.  Ben Nelson (D) is retiring from the Senate after serving Nebraskans since 2001, and this election will decide his replacement.  Mike Johanns (R) is the other Senator from Nebraska.  Sen. Johanns will be up for reelection in 2014.
- The Senate has the powers by the U.S. Constitution, which include consenting to treaties and confirming appointments of Cabinet secretariesfederal judges, ambassadors, and others.
- Due to the six-year term of a U.S. Senator and Nebraska’s smaller population compared to other states, our Senators may be the most important federally elected official to Nebraskans.

Who you should vote for:

Bob Kerrey (D)

Bob Kerrey has experience — and that matters in this race for U.S. Senate.  He ably served Nebraskans as Governor and U.S. Senator.  As Senator, he worked on the Agriculture and Appropriations Committees, as well as others.  He was known as an effective consensus builder across party lines and a practical thinker. In 1993, Sen. Kerrey famously lashed out on a Clinton-era tax hike proposal questioning whether tax cuts can really solve as many problems as politicians think.

Bob Kerrey is principled and transparent.  He has proven that he will vote to protect the interests of Nebraskans, even when our interests may not align with the party line.  He supports government’s role in health care for those who need help and at the same time advocates for restraint of government in health care and suggests specific, smart reforms to Obamacare.  He will preserve and protect the rights of women and has been a gay marriage advocate for longer than many of us have been alive.  He is a big thinker and a big doer.

In contrast, Deb Fischer is a reliable, lock-step Republican.  She has all but guaranteed that she will follow the Republican Party leaders as far right as they wish to go on any issue, without regard to the interests or opinions of Nebraskans.  Sarah and Todd Palin give her a strong endorsement, another sure sign that she will support and expand the ugly partisan grid lock in Washington if elected.

Deb Fischer has questioned the scientific basis for global warming and has signed the Americans for Prosperity No Climate Tax Pledge, limiting opportunities to address climate change through legislative activity.  Deb Fischer has signed Grover Nordquist’s Americans for Taxpayer Protection Pledge, which limits her choices when trying to solve problems for Nebraskans.

Her campaign has been full of platitudes and broad, miserable generalities, many of which are unworkable or impractical, particularly her support of the Ryan budget and its extreme cuts to Medicare and Medicaid.

Steve Martin, the comedian, captured the essence of this race when he said that Bob Kerrey “is sane and his ideas are workable.”  We agree and support Bob Kerrey for U.S. Senator from Nebraska.