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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.

 

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