Former Congressman Brad Ashford wants his old job back.
Ashford, a Democrat, says the shooting of Republican lawmakers at a practice for a charity baseball game moved him to go public with his decision to run again.
“These people are dedicated public servants and I think what we need to do is we need to bring more civility to Congress, more bipartisanship, so that we can show the country that we can do this,” Ashford tells Nebraska Radio Network.
Ashford says he had been leaning toward an announcement, but the shooting in Alexandria prompted him to make the decision this past weekend.
Last week, an unemployed home inspector from Illinois, 66-year-old James Hodgkinson, reported to be angry with President Trump and Republicans, opened fire at a baseball park just outside the District of Columbia in which Congressional Republicans were practicing for an annual charity game against Democrats. House Majority Whip Steve Scalise suffered serious wounds. Four others were wounded before Hodgkinson was shot and killed.
Ashford says the shootings moved him quite a bit.
Ashford, a former state senator, won election to Congress in 2014, defeating veteran incumbent Republican Lee Terry.
Ashford lost the Second Congressional District seat two years later in a close race with Republican Don Bacon, former commander of Offutt Air Force Base.
It was a close race. Ashford won Douglas County, but lost big in Sarpy County. Bacon won by fewer than 3,500 votes out of 288,000 votes cast.
Americans deserve to get action on pressing issues, according to Ashford.
“We’re not getting it not because there aren’t answers. We’re not getting it, because the institutional partisanship, seemingly institutional partisanship of the day, is getting in the way,” Ashford says, adding that political parties and big money get in the way of reaching consensus in Congress.
Before he gets a chance at a rematch, Ashford will have to secure the Democratic Party nomination.
Does he expect a Democratic primary?
“Oh yeah,” Ashford says with a chuckle, “sure.”
AUDIO: Brent Martin reports [1 min.]