Top Republican candidates for United States Senate say they welcome Bob Kerrey into the race and welcome the opportunity to point out a contrast.
Attorney General Jon Bruning says there’s a stark difference between his candidacy and that of Bob Kerrey.
“The vision that Bob Kerrey has for America involves government in every crack and crevice and that’s not my vision for America,” Bruning says. “My vision for America is where everybody has the opportunity to be successful, but the government doesn’t hand it to you.”
The theme of contrast threaded through each response to Kerrey’s decision to file as a Democrat for the seat incumbent Democratic Sen. Ben Nelson is leaving as he retires from public office. Kerrey first stated he wouldn’t enter the race, which prompted University of Nebraska Regent Chuck Hassebrook to enter as a Democrat. Kerrey reconsidered and decided he would run.
State Senator Deb Fischer of Valentine also draws a contrast between her candidacy and Kerrey’s.
“You know, I’m very conservative. The people in this state know who I am and they know my solid record that I have,” says Fischer. “Bob Kerrey is very liberal. I believe he’s become more liberal over time since he’s been out of the state.”
Kerrey left Nebraska to become the president of the New School in New York City, where he retains the title of president emeritus.
State Treasurer Don Stenberg doesn’t see Kerrey’s candidacy gaining traction.
“I think he’s out of touch with Nebraska, not just because he’s spent the last 11 years living in New York, but because he carries with him a liberal, big government philosophy that Nebraskans just don’t want,” according to Stenberg.
Businessman Pat Flynn and truck driver Spencer Zimmerman are also Republican candidates for U.S. Senate.
AUDIO: Brent Martin reports [:50]