United States Sen.-elect Ben Sasse takes the oath of office today in Washington, becoming the newest Nebraska Senator.
Sasse succeeds Sen. Mike Johanns, who is stepping down from the Senate after serving a term and retiring from public office after 32 years at all levels of government.
Sasse is one of 13 freshmen Senators; 12 Republicans and one Democrat.
Sasse says voters are sending a message to Washington, if Congress will only listen.
“I think the voters have been saying, with kind of three wave elections in the last four cycles, this is new in American history, and they’re saying I’m sick of everybody in Washington; throw all the bums out. I want to talk about bigger stuff,” Sasses tells Nebraska Radio Network.
Sasse has already set his eyes on changing Congress. Today, he co-sponsored a constitutional amendment that would limit the terms Senators and Representatives could serve. The amendment, which Sasse sponsors along with Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana, would limit United States Senators to two, six-year terms and United States Representatives to three, two-year terms.
Sasse admits the move is partly symbolic, but quickly adds he believes in term limits for Congress, saying Washington is addicted to its own incumbency, not to tackling the biggest problems facing Americans.
Sasse will be accompanied by Sen. Deb Fischer during the official ceremony today. Sasse takes the oath of office at Noon Eastern Time, 11am Central, and 10am Mountain.
With Sasse officially beginning his Senate term, Nebraska has an extremely inexperienced delegation. Fischer, also a Republican, won election to the United States Senate in 2012, succeeding Sen. Ben Nelson, a Democrat who retired.