Palin beats Trump’s nominee in Nebraska gubernatorial primary

OMAHA, Neb (AFP) – Jim Palin, the outgoing governor-backed University of Nebraska trustee, won Tuesday’s crowded Republican primary for governor over a candidate endorsed by Donald Trump, causing a huge loss to the former president as he attempts to shape the party’s future. Republican.

Belen, a pig farm owner and veterinarian, defeated eight competitors, including Charles Herbsterbusinessman She was accused late in the campaign of groping girls with young womenAnd Brett Lindstromthe state senator and financial advisor to Omaha who was generally seen as a more moderate option.

While Trump-backed candidates won the West Virginia primaries to elect the US House of Representatives on Tuesday, the statewide loss in Nebraska marked the A setback for Trump. He’s issued hundreds of endorsements and campaign-style rallies to support his favorite candidates, including Herbster, all in an effort to bend the Republican Party in his direction before another possible presidential run in 2024.

Herbster’s loss raises the stakes for other high-profile races this month in Pennsylvania and Georgia, where Trump has also campaigned.

In this Republican stronghold, Palin will be a strong candidate in the November general election against his Democratic opponent, state Senator Carol Blood. Nebraska has not elected a Democrat since 1994.

Palin has been endorsed by many of the state’s top Republican Party leaders, including Governor Pete Ricketts, former Governor Kai Orr, football coach and famous former University of Nebraska Congressman Tom Osborne. Ricketts are prevented by term limits from running again.

In Nebraska, allegations against Herbster, a longtime Trump supporter, did not prevent the former president from holding a rally with him earlier this month.

“I really think he’s going to do a great job, and if I didn’t feel like it, I wouldn’t be here,” Trump said at the rally at the racetrack outside Omaha.

In last month’s story, the Nebraska Examiner She interviewed six women who alleged that Herbster touched their buttocks, outside of their clothes, during political events or beauty pageants. A seventh woman said that Herbster once cornered her in private and forcibly kissed her.

One of the defendants, state Republican Senator Julie Salama, said Herbster wore and inappropriately touched her skirt at the annual Douglas County Republican Elephant Remains dinner in 2019. The Associated Press does not usually identify people who say they are victims of sexual assault Unless they choose to go public, as Salama has.

Herbster filed a defamation suit against Salama, saying she falsely accused him in an attempt to derail his campaign. Salama responded with a counterclaim against Herbster, alleging sexual battery.

Herbster has suggested in television ads that Belin and Ricketts conspired with Salameh to falsely accuse him of sexual assault – allegations the three deny.

Some voters said the allegations did not dissuade them from supporting Herbster.

When she voted at an elementary school in northwest Omaha on Tuesday, Joanne Cottan said she was “disturbed by the stories, but I don’t know if I believed them.” The 74-year-old said she eventually voted for Herbster “because it was recommended by President Trump”.

Lindstrom faced a barrage of attacks, too, with Ricketts-funded third-party TV ads portraying him as too liberal for the conservative state. A digitally modified advertisement shows Lindstrom standing in front of a rainbow flag with a coronavirus mask affixed to his face. A mailed ad indicates that Lindstrom has been endorsed by U.S. Representative Brad Ashford, a moderate Republican-turned-Democrat who died last month of brain cancer.

But Devon Leslie said he backed the 41-year-old because it was “time to hand politics over to the next generation”. Belin and Herbster are both in their 60s.

Leslie, 45, who lives in Omaha, said he didn’t care much about the various endorsements in the race.

I don’t trust any politician who talks about any other politician. He said. “We would never vote for anyone if we listened to their opponent.”

Carol Browning, 59, of Omaha, said she entered Election Day debate between Beilen and Lindstrom, but went with Bellen due to her age and experience. She said she likes that Ricketts and Osborne endorse Palin. Browning said the fact that Trump endorsed Herbster may have been a slight detour at this point, even though she voted for Trump.

She said the allegations against Herbster were not a big factor. “You don’t know what to believe,” Browning said.

Nebraska Secretary of State Bob Evenn, a Republican who also won re-nomination on Tuesday, predicted that 35% of registered voters would cast their ballots in the primaries, the highest percentage since 2006, based on what he’s seen so far.

Nebraska Republicans and Democrats also picked their candidates for the seat previously held by Republican Representative Jeff Fortenberry, who resigned and ended his re-election bid in March after being indicted on federal corruption charges.

Senator Mike Flood, a former speaker of the Nebraska legislature, won the Republican nomination, while Senator Patty Bansing Brooks won the Democratic nomination. Floods will enter the race as the favorite in the densely populated 1st congressional district, which includes Lincoln, small towns and a large swathe of farmland in eastern Nebraska.

Despite Trump losing the Nebraska gubernatorial race, his impact It proved decisive in West VirginiaAlso held primaries Tuesday. In a race between two Republican occupants against each other, Trump’s nominee, Representative Alex Mooney, defeated Representative David McKinley, who angered Trump by voting for President Joe Biden’s bipartisan infrastructure package and creating a House committee to investigate Jan. 6. The attack on the US Capitol building.


Associated Press writer Josh Funk contributed to this report.


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