It became apparent this week just who controls the Nebraska Democratic Party.
First, Bob Kerrey acknowledged that he made a secret deal with Reid if he changed his mind and decided to fly back to Nebraska and file to run for U.S. Senate. In Kerrey's own words, Reid made "important" promises to Kerrey. Kerrey, in turn, made promises to Reid. In Latin that's quid pro quo. Secret backroom promises. Kerrey claimed that these secret promises are in the best interest of Nebraska, just like Ben Nelson said his Cornhusker Kickback was good for Nebraska. Ben Nelson's secret backroom deal forever embarrassed our great state. How much damage will Big Apple Bob's Bargain do?
Next, Reid and his henchman cleared the way for Kerrey in the Democrat primary by getting Chuck Hassebrook to withdraw from the race and endorse Kerrey, mere days after Hassebrook called Kerrey's integrity into question. The Kerrey candidacy is so shaky that Reid took out a guy of modest means whose statewide name identification hovers in the single digits
Soon, Reid and his liberal allies will be running ads in Kerrey's favor, and attacking our Republican Senate candidates.
It's clear that, despite Reid's efforts to control Nebraska politics, Nebraskans like our Republican Senate candidates a heckuva lot more than Big Apple Bob. Two polls released this week, including one by the respected Rasmussen Reports, confirm that Kerrey is trailing Attorney General Jon Bruning, State Senator Deb Fischer and State Treasurer Don Stenberg.
I predict Nebraska Democrats will regret standing idly by while Harry Reid cut another secret backroom deal and orchestrated the demise of their party. Bob Kerrey is the past, not the future. And given Kerrey's mercurial nature, there's a decent chance Kerrey could quit the race in July to go hike the Appalachian Trail á la Mark Sanford, or simply decide that his "little town blues" are "melting away" and that his "vagabond shoes" are "longing to stray" and run right back home to New York, New York. And if that doesn't happen, rest assured that Nebraska Republicans, Tea Party members, conservatives, independents and moderate Democrats will cast their vote in November for the Republican Senate nominee and a Republican-controlled U.S. Senate.
I've said it before, and I'll say it again: pick a Republican U.S. Senate candidate and get to work on their behalf. We'll come out united behind our nominee after the May 15 primary to finally send Sen. Mike Johanns a Nebraska ally in the U.S. Senate.
The rest of my weekly Chairman's Report can be accessed here.