Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Nelson (D) to Retire

That Senate majority for the Republicans is looking more and more likely.

"Add another to the list of Democratic victims of ObamaCare:

Democratic Sen. Ben Nelson of Nebraska will announce today that he is retiring after two terms, a serious blow to Democratic efforts to hold onto their majority in the chamber next November.

Nelson is scheduled to hold a press conference back home in Nebraska as early as today to make his decision official, said several Democratic insiders close to the leadership. …

The White House and top Senate Democrats, including Majority Leader Harry Reid (Nev.) and Sen. Chuck Schumer (N.Y.), had quietly mounted a pressure campaign to keep Nelson from retiring. Nelson has more than $3 million in his campaign war chest, and his approval rating solidified after falling over the last several years.

But with Nelson stepping down, the Democrats’ hold on the Senate is in serious doubt, although Democratic leaders believe they can still do so. Republicans are expected to pick up control of the Cornhusker State seat, although popular former Sen. Bob Kerrey (D) has been talking to top Democrats about possibly running again.

How big of a deal is this? On one hand, it’s easy to underestimate the power of incumbency. On the other, the man couldn’t even eat a pizza in peace after casting a decisive vote for ObamaCare and tossing his pro-life credentials into the wastebasket by doing so. Nelson wasn’t going to get re-elected, and would likely have lost by a wide margin in a very red state, especially in a presidential election cycle.

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