Font Size A A A Print Email Share


Deb Fischer - Welfare Rancher

Calculations Made by the Nebraska Democratic Party Showing How Much Deb Fischer has Underpaid for her Federal Grazing Rights

The following link is for a table showing the specifics of the calculations that were made.



The source documents used to make the calculations can be found here:


Source Documents


Included are U.S. Forest Service documents obtained via a FOIA request for Deb Fischer’s Sunny Slope Ranch which show fees paid and actual grazing usage and on public lands, as well as UNL and USDA reports that were used to determine private grazing rental rates.

Share on Twitter
Bookmark and Share

The Buck Stops Here!

Dennis Crawford is our newly elected 2nd associate Chair. He will begin serving his term on the NDP's executive board at the first State Central Committee meeting following November's election. Thank you to Dennis for his contribution to the NDP's blog.

Harry Truman said, "If You Want To Live Like a Republican, Vote Democratic."

That's what Harry Truman said back during the 1940s when he was President. Why would Truman say such a thing? Does that hold true today? Those are good questions because the perceived conventional wisdom among many pundits in the mainstream media and the GOP is that Republicans are better for the overall economy than Democrats because they are allegedly more business friendly. However, as in many other instances, the conventional wisdom is wrong. The history of the last 50 years demonstrates that the economy performs much better for all Americans when a Democrat occupies the White House.

A recent report from Bloomberg News Services shows that since John F. Kennedy took office in January 1961, non-government payrolls in the U.S. increased by almost 42 million jobs under Democrats, compared with 24 million for Republican presidents, according to Labor Department figures. Democrats hold the edge even though they occupied the Oval Office for 23 years since Kennedy's inauguration, compared with 28 for the Republicans. Through April 2012, Democratic presidents accounted for an average of 150,000 additional private-sector paychecks per month over that period, more than double the 71,000 average for Republicans. In other words, almost two-thirds of private-sector job growth in the past five decades occurred when we had Democratic Presidents.

What about the stock market? Has it performed better when we've had Republican Presidents since the Republicans promote themselves as the friendliest party for Wall Street? The answer to that question is a flat no. Many people will probably be surprised to find out that stock investors do much better when Democrats occupy the White House. From a dollars- and-cents standpoint, it's not even close.

Another recent survey by Bloomberg News service indicates that, over the five decades since John F. Kennedy was inaugurated, $1,000 invested in a hypothetical fund that tracks the Standard & Poor's 500 Index (SPX) only when Democrats are in the White House would have been worth $10,920 in 2012. A $1,000 stake invested in a fund that followed the S&P 500 under Republican presidents, starting with Richard Nixon, would have grown to $2,087 on the day George W. Bush left office. Similarly, investing $1,000 in funds that mirror the Dow Jones Industrial Average under the same conditions, Democratic investors would have had $7,550, versus $2,716 under Republicans.

Just what has led to this vast superior economic performance when we've Democratic Presidents? Is it just a bizarre coincidence as the Republicans would lead you to believe? (Was it just a coincidence that Nebraska won all of those football games in the Devaney-Osborne era?) I would submit that the superior economic performance is due to the vastly different strategies the two respective parties pursue regarding economic policy.

The Republicans aren't pro-business - they are pro-big business.

That's a big difference because what's in the interest of big business and the wealthy isn't what's good for the overall economy. The GOP strategy is to give the wealthy and corporations big tax cuts and relaxed regulation, and hope that something good happens down the road. That strategy clearly failed during the Bush Administration and it's apparent that Romney and the Republicans are promising more of the same if they should win the elections.

We Democrats recognize that 70% of economic activity is generated by consumer spending. If you want to have a healthy, growing economy, you need to have confident consumers with money to spend. That's why we believe economic growth begins with the middle class. Our support of middle class tax cuts, student loans, Pell grants and infrastructure projects increases middle class spending power and puts them in a position to purchase the goods and services produced by the so-called "jobs creators."

Harry Truman was right. History clearly demonstrates that if you want to live like a Republican, you should vote Democratic. What this means for all of us is that we need to get out and work hard for our excellent slate of Democratic candidates here in Nebraska. Our economic future depends upon the outcome of the 2012 elections.




Share on Twitter
Bookmark and Share

I'm Stunned

Dennis Crawford is our newly elected 2nd associate Chair. He will begin serving his term on the NDP's executive board at the first State Central Committee meeting following November's election. Thank you to Dennis for his contribution to the NDP's blog.

I'm stunned and almost speechless. Earlier today, the U.S. Supreme Court voted by a 5-4 margin to affirm the constitutionality of Health Care Reform. In the most surprising development, Chief Justice Roberts voted with Breyer, Bader-Ginsburg, Sotomayor and Kagan in finding that the individual mandate is constitutional under the Congress' power to tax.

What does this decision mean and what comes next?

This decision means that 6.6 million young people will be able to stay on their parents' health insurance policies, 50,000 people with pre-existing conditions will maintain their health insurance coverage, seniors will continue to receive discounts on their prescription drug expenses, and the insurance industry will be required to send out $1.2 billion in rebate checks later this year. This decision allows 30 million people to maintain hope that they will be covered by 2014.

In practical terms, the Supreme Court's land mark decision affirming Health Care Reform will help the mother with a child who has leukemia. The recent college grad who's unemployed and thinking about making a doctor's appointment. The grandfather who isn't sure if he'll be able to afford the prescription medication he needs. The middle-class family who isn't sure if they'll be able to keep their home if their medical bills broach the lifetime cap "Obamacare" eliminated.

What does this mean and what comes next? We have won an important battle but we haven't won the war. The GOP - in a rather startling flip flop - hoped to repeal Health Care Reform by judicial fiat. Apparently, the GOP didn't have a problem with five unelected judges in Washington with taxpayer financed health insurance policies winning a battle in the courts for them after they lost at the ballot box in 2006 and 2008. The bottom line here is that the GOP - instead of repealing Health Care Reform by relying upon unelected judges - must instead obtain the repeal of Health Care Reform by winning the elections this year. That's the way it should be.

Health Care Reform won't be fully implemented until 2014. I predict that once Health Care Reform is fully implemented, it will be successful and prove to be popular. That's why the GOP is so desperate to repeal it. The GOP is now in a race against time - this year's elections constitute their last chance to repeal Health Care Reform.

In order to preserve Health Care Reform, Nebraska Democrats must redouble our efforts to re-elect President Obama and elect Bob Kerrey, Korey Reiman, John Ewing and Mark Sullivan. If we are to finally provide access to health care and health insurance to all Americans, we must win these elections. The GOP has promised to make the repeal of Health Care Reform its first order of business in 2013 if they win the elections this year. Now let's get to work and preserve this great victory for the American people!

Share on Twitter
Bookmark and Share

Knowing they can’t win at the polls, Heineman demands a rule change

Complaining yet again about Nebraska's split electoral vote system.

"Whenever men take the law into their own hands, the loser is the law. And when the law loses, freedom languishes." - Robert F. Kennedy

It must really sting that the Nebraska Republican Party lost Congressional District 2 to Obama under Nebraska's split electoral vote system.

Back in 1991, State Senator DiAnna Schimek worked to change Nebraska to a split electoral vote. As a result of her efforts, Nebraska is one of two states that allow for the electoral votes in a Presidential election to be split; the other 48 states vote as "winner takes all."

2008 marked the first time that Nebraska actually split our electoral vote for a Presidential candidate with Barack Obama taking a lone electoral vote from Congressional District 2 (Douglas county and part of Sarpy county) with the four other votes going to McCain. So it really chafes the Nebraska Republican Party that Democrats in Nebraska worked hard to ensure accurate representation by giving President Obama an electoral vote.

Since 2008, Governor Dave Heineman and the Nebraska Republican Party have been actively attempting to change Nebraska back to a "winner takes all state." Nebraska Republicans in the Legislature made it their priority to undo the split electoral vote with Legislative Bill 21 since they lost at the polls on November 4, 2008. Thankfully this partisan bill has been indefinitely postponed.

As the 2012 General Election approaches, the Nebraska Republican Party is worried that Mitt Romney is so weak that he'll lose one, if not more, electoral votes to Barack Obama on Tuesday, November 6, 2012. Tuesday, Governor Dave Heineman whined about the unfairness of Nebraska's split electoral vote; complaining it's "totally inappropriate." Most Nebraskans wouldn't consider healthy competition unfair or the need to put in hard work to win to be "totally inappropriate."

Of course, Heineman's comments might carry more weight if the Republicans had actually bothered to complain in the nearly two decades after Nebraska switched to a split electoral vote.

Heineman went on to complain that the efforts to keep the current system were "partisan and political," yet he fails to acknowledge that Nebraska Republicans - including himself - have fought for the last year to change Nebraska to "winner takes all." How is this not partisan?

The split electoral vote means Nebraskans have fair and equal representation. The split electoral vote means Nebraska is a battleground state. The split electoral vote means that both the Obama and Romney campaigns could pour millions into the Nebraska economy. Given that Heineman has struggled to close budget gaps, why would he actively work to keep money out of Nebraska? This is nothing more than Heineman's partisan politics and a group of sore losers trying to change the rules at the last minute. Too bad they think their needs outweigh the good of Nebraska.


Share on Twitter
Bookmark and Share

Just Who is Deb Fischer?

The Candidate No One Knows....

Bob Kerrey has accepted the first invitation to debate Deb Fischer, which would allow Nebraskans to discover who can best represent our state in Washington, DC.

So far, the media agrees on one thing about Deb Fischer following her surprise Primary win last Tuesday - no one knows who she is or what she stands for. Leading up to the Primary last week, Fischer did little campaigning on her own and slipped through the Primary due to the outside influence of $254,863 worth of negative ads paid for by billionaire Joe Ricketts, CEO of TD Ameritrade.

The proposed debate, sponsored by The American Legion Cornhusker Boys State and American Legion Auxiliary Cornhusker Girls State on June 5th at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, gives Nebraskans an opportunity to examine Fischer's extreme right-wing voting record.

Fischer has been identified by a blog as being in the "96th percentile for conservatism in the officially nonpartisan Nebraska unicameral, and in the 93rd percentile of identified Republicans. That is, only 7 percent of Nebraska Republicans are more conservative than she in recent years."

If Fischer maintains this hard-core ideology and is elected to the US Senate, her views would place her somewhere near Senator Jim DeMint of South Carolina, who is in favor of the Ryan budget, was against bailing out the auto industry, and wished to permit oil drilling & development in ANWR.

So who really knows Deb Fisher? Right now it's a small group of 79,000 voters from the Primary. These voters make up less than 7% of the voting electorate, and the main argument of the Primary election was to vote for "Anyone But Bruning." That's not exactly the way to reach people, discuss the issues, and be elected on merit. Most Nebraskans simply don't know Deb.

Accepting this invitation to debate will help Nebraskans see who Deb Fischer is. Does Deb represent Nebraska values or is she already bought and paid for by billionaire Joe Ricketts?



Share on Twitter
Bookmark and Share

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Gale urged to investigate Douglas County voting changes

Two organizations concerned with voting rights have asked Secretary of State John Gale to exercise his statutory authority as the state's chief election officer to "inspect and review" recent actions in Douglas County that sharply reduce the number of voting locations.

Two organizations concerned with voting rights have asked Secretary of State John Gale to exercise his statutory authority as the state's chief election officer to "inspect and review" recent actions in Douglas County that sharply reduce the number of voting locations.

Douglas County Election Commissioner Dave Phipps has cut polling places in half for the 2012 election.

"According to our analysis, Commissioner Phipps' polling place closings disproportionately impact low-income and minority populations' access to the polls," Gale was told in a letter sent Tuesday night by Adam Morfeld, executive director of Nebraskans for Civic Reform, and Rebecca Gould, executive director of Nebraska Appleseed.

"These actions appear to have a discriminatory effect and impinge upon the fundamental right to vote," they wrote Gale.

The result is "overwhelming concern among community members that these changes are confusing and are likely to have the effect of disenfranchising thousands of Nebraska voters," their letter stated.

Morfeld and Gould told Gale they are formally requesting that he "initiate an official investigation" into the practices and procedures initiated by Phipps.

Gale, they noted, already has raised his own concerns in an e-mail communication to Larry Bare, who is Gov. Dave Heineman's chief of staff.

In that e-mail, Gale said the slash in voting sites "seems troubling" and expressed concern that Douglas County has fallen behind in recording registered voters.

"Those concerns also provide additional grounds for an investigation into not only voter registration practices, but also Commissioner Phipps' administrative practices as a whole," Morfeld and Gould told Gale.

"Fair and well-administered elections are critical not only to a representative democracy, but also to the public perception of the legitimacy of our elections," they wrote.



Share on Twitter
Bookmark and Share

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Top Election Official Warned Governor of Polling Place "Trouble"

Democrats fight for the right of Nebraskans to vote while GOP officials warn the closing of polling sites will "likely cause voter confusion".

See the video here:

Lincoln, NE -- A warning from a top Nebraska government official - closing polling places in Douglas County will "likely cause voter confusion". Action 3 News has learned some of Nebraska's top officials questioned Dave Phipps' decision to cut so many polling places. The man behind the questioning email is responsible for overseeing the state elections. Why would he try to kick Liz Dorland out of the capitol when she went to ask about the email?

Liz Dorland had to run just to catch up with Nebraska Secretary of State John Gale.

Liz shouted, "Mr. Gale. I'm Liz Dorland with Channel 3. I want to ask you a couple of questions please about Mr. Dave Phipps and his decision to close half the polling places."

John Gale didn't stop when he replied, "You know I've told your News Director that I was not available for an on-camera interview."

Mr. Gale knows Liz went to talk with him about an email he wrote March 2nd to Governor Heineman's Chief of Staff. In it, he calls the decision to close polling places "troubling".

"If you interrupt me or interfere, I'll have to have you removed from the Capitol, but go ahead ask your questions," replied Gale.

Secretary Gale said he knew Phipps wanted to close polling places all over the county several months before he did it. Gale said, "I don't have the discretion or authority to override Mr. Phipps decision."

Secretary Gale emailed a letter as a "head's up" to the Governor's office, warning of possible problems. He explained, "Our concern was that in a presidential year it might cause undo confusion of voters and that they needed to make sure if they were going to do that that they did it right, and the public knew about it and they were well informed."

Dave Phipps responded, "No I think regardless of what type of election year this presidential or not it was the right thing to do."

Gale's email adds "a 50% drop in precinct numbers is pretty major in one year".

"He obviously thinks that was too drastic of a cut and I believe that was appropriate," said Phipps in response.

The email continues, Gale's office is "concerned about some of the management issues with Dave Phipps" . Governor Heineman's Chief of Staff replied to Gale with a simple "thanks".

Governor Dave Heineman said on Monday, "I let the election commissioners worry about the elections."

The Governor's office emailed this statement: "This email was sent as a heads-up and taken as such. No further action was taken."

Governor Heineman appointed Dave Phipps. Many, including State Senator Brenda Council believe it's time for Heineman to step in. Senator Council said, "This is his appointee and his appointee's performance is being questioned by a Constitutional Officer, the Secretary of State and he's revealing in this email how troubling it is."

If the Governor doesn't, Council warns frustration in the legislature could quickly change. "It can rise to the level of anger when you've been put on notice that it could create problems and nothing is done to stop it or in that regard to mitigate the damage that it would cause," explained Senator Council.

Vince Powers speaks for the Nebraska Democratic Party. "This is extremely serious. This is a scandal. They sat on it they knew it," said Powers.

The Nebraska Democratic Party is demanding the Governor step-in and fire Phipps. "The question is will the Governor come forward voluntarily and answer questions as to what did he do and if he didn't do anything why he didn't. or will it take the legislature or will it take the civil rights division of the justice department," Powers added.

The overriding question for Secretary Gale, can polling places be re-opened by the May primary? He explained, "I don't know if any significant changes at this point are even possible by the primary election."

It's an election that's now just six weeks away. So it all comes back to Governor Heineman.
He told Liz Dorland he doesn't have time to look at the problems this week. However, Governor Heineman will be in Omaha Wednesday morning at Omaha Country Club, located at 6900 Country Club Road. Liz will be there to speak with Governor Heineman and give it another try.


Share on Twitter
Bookmark and Share

First Kerrey TV Ads Focus on Character, America's Challenges

Omaha, March 13, 2012 - Former Nebraska Governor and Senator Bob Kerrey's 2012 U.S. Senate campaign launched its first television ads today.

Omaha, March 13, 2012 - Former Nebraska Governor and Senator Bob
Kerrey's 2012 U.S. Senate campaign launched its first television ads

In "Step Up,"
Kerrey says, "America needs to step up its game. Our government is
dysfunctional, our schools are not performing at world standards, our
competitors are stealing our technology and our debt is crippling our
future. We need leaders willing to lead, willing to make the tough
decisions, willing to work with both parties. And I'm ready to do just
that. It's good to be back. I'm Bob Kerrey and I sponsored this ad."

"Welcome Home" features Nebraskans talking about Kerrey's Nebraska roots, his character, and his service to Nebraska and the nation.

After his service as a Navy SEAL in Vietnam, Bob Kerrey spent nine
months in a hospital recovering from his severe war wounds and later
returned to Nebraska to start several successful businesses. He served
as Governor of Nebraska from 1983-1987, and as a U.S. Senator from
Nebraska from 1989-2001. After retiring from the Senate, Kerrey took a
job as President of the New School University in New York and served on
President Bush's 9/11 Commission.

Share on Twitter
Bookmark and Share

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Article Shows How Bob Kerrey is an ‘Authentic Maverick’

Let me tell you about one of my favorite mavericks, a Democrat, who served two terms in the U.S. Senate before leaving voluntarily. Facing a tough re-election race in the very Republican year of 1994, he was assailed for having voted to outlaw assault weapons. In a TV spot, he picked up an AK-47 at a target range and said: “Twenty-five years ago in the war in Vietnam, people hunted me. They needed a good weapon like this AK-47. But you don’t need one of these to hunt birds.” Heard anybody make that case recently?


OMAHA– A column from Mark Shields over the weekend says Bob
Kerrey is just the independent thinker that the United States Senate needs.

“The officeholder in the Opposition Party who dares to break
from his side’s rigid orthodoxy is admired — by those of us in Our Party — as a
courageous maverick who has the guts to take a lonely stand against party
bosses. But when the rebel is in Our Party, too often we react quite
differently. Then, the dissenter in our ranks is an unreliable and, probably, self-absorbed
turncoat. Hypocrisy, anyone?”

Read the entire column here:


Mark Shields: Nebraska's Bob Kerrey - An Authentic Maverick

Share on Twitter
Bookmark and Share

Remembering Bloody Sunday

Posted by Will Crossley, DNC Counsel and Director of Voter Protection on Wednesday, March 07, 2012 at 10:15 a.m. ET


On Sunday, I marched the Edmund Pettus Bridge. On the other side, there
were columns of Alabama State Troopers lining Highway 80. It could not
have been 1965; nearly all of the troopers were African American.

Not far ahead of me was Congressman John Lewis, who, along with
Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth and other iconic leaders of the civil rights
movement, marched from Selma toward Montgomery on March 7, 47 years
ago. But most of us marching, then and now, were ordinary citizens. In
1965, there were 600 Americans who may never become household names, but
who marched that day for a fairer America—an America where all eligible
citizens could safely register to vote, cast a ballot, and have their
votes counted just like anyone else.

Remembering Bloody Sunday


Share on Twitter
Bookmark and Share