A Nebraska Congressional race which caught national attention breaks in favor of the incumbent as freshman Congressman Don Bacon wins re-election.
Bacon held off a strong challenge by Democrat Kara Eastman, who surprised some by her victory in the Democratic primary.
Bacon tells supporters they kept the so-called blue wave from ushering him out of office.
“Despite this wave that we’re seeing and going against the headwinds all over our country right now, we’re losing some seats out there, this district held firm,” Bacon says as supporters applaud. “We did. We held firm.”
Early projections had Bacon as a vulnerable freshman in a district nearly evenly split between Republicans and Democrats. After Eastman defeated former Congressman Brad Ashford in the Democratic primary, her Bernie Sanders-leaning take on the issues attracted national attention and money, fueling thoughts Eastman could defeat the incumbent and help Democrats re-take control of the United States House of Representatives.
Democrats did, indeed, re-take the House, but without the benefit of winning the Second Congressional District.
Bacon received 121,466 votes, or 51.55%, according to the Secretary of State’s office. Eastman won 114,154 votes; 48.45%.
Bacon tells supporters the district held firm, because the issues broke in his favor.
“We know that we have the best economy in five decades, that we have put our defense and our military back on its feet again,” Bacon says. “But, in the end, we know that the federal government isn’t the answer to everything, that we want to go through the state and local level to be the principle levers of power, that a one-size-fits-all approach for our health care is not the right answer.”
Eastman fully embraced Sen. Bernie Sanders’ call to expand Medicare to everyone; the Medicare-for-all chant that many Democrats embraced.
Bacon concedes to supporters Congress has work to do, especially in the area of health care, which he says it too expensive.
“It’s too expensive for those who are on the market right now,” according to Bacon. “Our real estate agents, our farmers, our business men and women, those on the market, we have got to provide relief. I’m committed to doing that. We are going to find the right approach forward that fixes our immigration problem, that secures our border. We’re going to stand by that. And, we are going to find a way to get more folks back into the workforce who are on various programs at a time of record low unemployment.”
AUDIO: Congressman Don Bacon addresses supporters election night [10 min.]