Sen. Ben Nelson told Nebraska reporters that he can look back at many highlights in his political career, but that he prepares to leave the nation’s Capital as a time when it is deeply divided.
Nelson reminisced during his weekly conference call with reporters, discussing his career in public service which comes to a close at the end of the month.
Nelson, a Democrat, served two terms as governor and two as United States Senator. He decided against running for re-election. Republican Deb Fischer will take his place.
Nelson said too many people in Washington are looking to divide the country, not bring it together.
“We can be divided over issues, but we don’t have to be divided as a people,” according to Nelson. “And when elections are over, we move forward, not just sit around planning to beat somebody in the next election.”
Nelson said he sought partnership, not partisanship during his time in Washington, seeking ways to reach out and bring people together. He said he and his staff worked hard to help Nebraskans who were struggling with federal government bureaucracy.
“I may not have always be right back here, but I’ve always tried to be on the right side for people,” Nelson stated.
Nelson said his greatest accomplishments centered on such things as helping the military and solidifying the Strategic Air Command headquarters near Omaha as well as serving the interests of agriculture through such things as supporting ethanol.
Senate rules, according to Nelson, prevent him from fully disclosing his plans after he retires from public services, but says he plans to split time between a law firm in Washington and Nebraska. He says retirement will give him a chance to spend more time with his family.
AUDIO: Brent Martin reports [:40]