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The Nebraska GOP is rejecting all Republican congressional incumbents in Tuesday's primary election

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The Nebraska GOP is rejecting all Republican congressional incumbents in Tuesday's primary election


OMAHA, Neb. — In one of the most closely watched congressional races this year, U.S. Rep. Don Bacon of Nebraska is looking to defeat a fellow Republican in Tuesday’s primary election in his quest for reelection. He’ll have to do it without the support of the state Republican Party, which has endorsed his primary challenger.

Bacon, whose district includes the state’s largest city of Omaha, isn’t the only one being snubbed. The Nebraska GOP, which was taken over by those loyal to former President Donald Trump during a contentious state convention in 2022, has refused to endorse any of the Republican incumbents who hold all five of the state’s congressional seats.

The state party has endorsed primary challengers to U.S. Sen. Pete Ricketts and Rep. Adrian Smith, who represents the state’s vast rural 3rd Congressional District. And it has declined to issue endorsements in the primary races of U.S. Sen. Deb Fischer and Rep. Mike Flood, who represents the 1st Congressional District that includes the state capital of Lincoln. Both Fischer and Flood face primary challengers who entered those races after the Nebraska GOP announced its endorsement decision in January.

It’s an oddity that lays bare the bitter divide between Trump loyalists who control the Nebraska GOP, as well as several county Republican parties, and the more establishment-type Republicans who were previously at the helm, said John Hibbing, a longtime University of Nebraska-Lincoln political science professor.

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“It’s not a good look,” Hibbing said. “You’d like the faces of your party, who would be your elected representatives, and the state party leaders to be on the same page.”

It’s even more perplexing when considering the voting records and campaign rhetoric of the incumbents, he said.

“I think they’re probably wondering: ‘What else can we do?’” Hibbing said. “These are solidly conservative individuals.”

Nowhere is the state party’s rejection more likely to leave a mark than in Bacon’s race. The incumbent faces a challenge from Dan Frei, who bills himself as to the right of Bacon. Frei previously ran for the seat in 2014 and came close to besting then-Rep. Lee Terry in the Republican primary.

Bacon is one of 16 Republican members of Congress representing districts that Democrat Joe Biden carried in 2020.

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Nebraska eschewed a winner-take-all system of awarding presidential electoral votes more than 30 years ago and instead allows its electoral votes tied to its three congressional districts to be split. Bacon’s district has seen its elector vote go to a Democratic presidential candidate twice — to Barack Obama in 2008 and to Biden in 2020.

After the state GOP endorsed Frei, Bacon defended his record as “a common-sense conservative who is able to reach across the aisle and find areas of consensus.”

Bacon has said that “it’s sad to see the division in the party,” Danielle Jensen, communications director of the Bacon campaign, said Monday. “I can tell you, he does not think this is going to negatively affect the campaign.”

The campaigns of Fischer, Flood, Ricketts and Smith did not immediately response to messages seeking comment.

The state party said in an email Monday it didn’t endorse any of the Republican incumbents because they didn’t ask. The challengers who got the party’s endorsement did ask, and a vote of the more than 160 elected governing body members of the party gave them that endorsement, said Todd Watson, political director of the state GOP.

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Watson denied that the move was solely about Trump, but said most Nebraska Republicans are fed up with what they see as attacks on Trump, the state party’s new direction and “our way of life.”

“What we believe in is the Constitution, conservative principles, and God,” he said.

A former state Republican Party official, Kerry Winterer, excoriated the state party in an opinion piece published in the Nebraska Examiner last week, saying the party’s primary purpose is to elect Republicans but that it has instead become bound solely to Trump.

“A political party bound to one candidate cannot possibly fulfill its purpose of electing candidates that share a common political philosophy,” Winterer wrote.

Watson countered that “the old leadership” of the state GOP has it wrong.

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“Objectives of the party are achieved in our mind when we elect constitutional and platform Republicans to office,” he said. “Electing Republicans that are not committed to the objective of the party … to defend the Constitution and advance our principles as stated in our written platform and plans have been a real problem for this party and country.”



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Pete Davidson loses his cool as he walks OFF stage due to heckling at Nebraska stand-up gig… but fans defend the former SNL star

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Pete Davidson loses his cool as he walks OFF stage due to heckling at Nebraska stand-up gig… but fans defend the former SNL star


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Fans online are coming to Pete Davidson’s defense after the comedian lost his cool and was forced to walk off stage before finishing a set in Omaha, Nebraska due to heckling.

The 30-year-old former Saturday Night Live regular was hounded by rowdy fans during his Prehab Tour stop on Friday night and ended the show early as a result.

Following the debacle, a fan named Kate Stivers took to YouTube to speak out in support of the actor, with others also coming to his defense. 

‘Where the f**k did decorum go at events because he shouldn’t have had to walk off stage because you guys don’t understand that because you see crowd work on TikTok that you think every comedian needs to be heckled to the point that they leave stage with one joke left,’ the influencer said in part.

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The show took place at the venue Steelhouse Omaha. 

Fans online are coming to Pete Davidson’s defense after the comedian was forced to walk off stage before finishing a set in Omaha, Nebraska due to heckling; pictured on SNL last October

The 30-year-old former Saturday Night Live regular was hounded by rowdy fans during his Prehab Tour stop on Friday night and ended the show early as a result; pictured in October 2023

The 30-year-old former Saturday Night Live regular was hounded by rowdy fans during his Prehab Tour stop on Friday night and ended the show early as a result; pictured in October 2023

Stivers went on to add, ‘It’s just absolutely absurd. You’re ruining it for the whole show.’

She noted that attendees were required to hand over their phones ahead of the performance, stating that she agrees with the policy. 

‘There should be no tolerance. You need to immediately be kicked the f**k out,’ the YouTuber proclaimed in her spirited rant.

Other users on the platform echoed her sentiments.

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‘I was at this show, and unfortunately ended up sitting by one of the women being a problem. It was embarrassing to say the least. 

‘Disappointed Nebraska didn’t allow him to feel respected enough to finish his set. Definitely embarrassing for Omaha, and sad that has to be his last taste of our city,’ one person lamented.

Another added, ‘I’ve been to so many comedy shows in Omaha and don’t understand why people feel like they need to be part of the show.’

The person continued, ‘I’m here to see the comedian, not hear your comments that are so funny to your garage beer drinking buddies. That made me so sad for Pete and all the people who paid the money and waited in line to see that second show.’ 

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Following the debacle, a fan named Kate Stivers took to YouTube to speak out in support of the actor, with others also coming to his defense

Following the debacle, a fan named Kate Stivers took to YouTube to speak out in support of the actor, with others also coming to his defense

Other users on YouTube echoed Stivers' sentiments

Other users on YouTube echoed Stivers’ sentiments

Per Page Six, a Pete supporter on Reddit also contributed to the conversation: ‘I was there and it was so s****y.

‘He was so close to being done and we lost out on a great ending to a great show because people suck.’

Davidson is scheduled to next take the stage on Saturday, June 8 in Niagara Falls at OLG Stage at Fallsview Casino.

The tour will then head to Wisconsin, where he has two shows scheduled on June 12 and June 13.

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Former Husker transfers to Syracuse

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Former Husker transfers to Syracuse


A former Nebraska running back/wide receiver announced that he will be transferring to Syracuse next season. Will Nixon will play for his father, Syracuse offensive coordinator Jeff Nixon, next season.

Nixon played for Nebraska for the 2020 and 2021 seasons as a wide receiver. He did not play in 2020 due to a season-ending injury. For the 2021 season, he appeared in three games and caught one pass for five yards.

He would then transfer to Washington for the 2022 and 2023 seasons, where he would play running back. Last season he recorded 33 carries for 201 yards and one touchdown.

Contact/Follow us @CornhuskersWire on X, and like our page on Facebook to follow ongoing coverage of Nebraska news, notes, and opinions.





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Detweiler, Olson earn NU's top faculty honors

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Detweiler, Olson earn NU's top faculty honors


Innovative research by the University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s Carrick Detweiler and Kristen Olson have earned President’s Excellence Awards.

Announced May 23, the awards are the University of Nebraska system’s most prestigious honors that recognize faculty for work that has a strong impact on students, the university and state.

Detweiler, Susan J. Rosowski Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering and co-director of the NIMBUS Lab, received the Faculty Intellectual Property Innovation and Commercialization Award for his work developing unmanned aerial vehicles for use with water, fire and crops. The FIPICA recognizes faculty who have developed and nurtured significant new intellectual property from concept to licensing and/or startup business.

Olson, Leland J. and Dorothy H. Olson Professor in the Department of Sociology and director of the Bureau of Sociological Research, received the Outstanding Research and Creative Activity award for research focused on survey methodology. The ORCA recognizes faculty for outstanding research or creative activity of national or international significance.

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“Great faculty are at the heart of the University of Nebraska’s work and mission. We are fortunate that our classrooms and research labs are led by people who care deeply about creating a strong future for students and our state,” said Chris Kabourek, interim NU president. “I’m honored to have this opportunity to lift up the work of some of the University of Nebraska’s most outstanding faculty, and I thank them for all they do to change lives in Nebraska and around the world.”

Award recipients are selected by systemwide committees of faculty members and community members. Recipients each receive a $10,000 stipend. They will be honored at the Aug. 8 Board of Regents meeting.

Biographies for Detweiler and Olson are below.

Faculty IP Innovation and Commercialization Award

Carrick Detweiler

Detweiler’s research is focused on developing systems and software to enable interactions of unmanned aerial vehicles with water, fire and crops. As co-founder of Drone Amplified, he has successfully transferred his innovative and transdisciplinary work to the market and is helping to save lives and the environment.

The company’s signature product is IGNIS, a drone-based system that allows firefighters to remotely ignite backburns and prescribed burns while staying out of harm’s way. These burns effectively eliminate the fuel wildfires rely on to spread out of control and are critical tools for federal, state and local agencies charged with reducing fire danger. More than 150 IGNIS systems have been sold and used by public and private entities.

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Drone Amplified is also growing the innovation economy, employing a number of university graduates including several who moved to Nebraska specifically to work for the company, and expanding high-wage, high-skill jobs in the Cornhusker State.

Detweiler is also a fellow of the Robert B. Daughterty Water for Food Institute and a faculty fellow with the University of Nebraska Public Policy Center.

Outstanding Research and Creative Activity Award

Kristen Olson

Olson’s research focuses on survey methodology, a field with broad real-world impacts in academia, government, marketing, public policy, public health, program evaluation, and nonprofit and for-profit enterprises around the world.

Her work seeks to understand and improve survey data quality through the reduction of coverage, sampling, nonresponse, measurement and adjustment errors.

Olson is widely published, has been elected as a Fellow of the American Statistical Society and Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and has served on a number of national task forces and panels related to survey methodology and public opinion research. Her work shapes data collection at the highest levels and has put the University of Nebraska–Lincoln on the map in the field.

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Additional NU system awards

Other members of the NU system earning 2024 President’s Excellence Awards are:

Outstanding Teaching and Instructional Creativity Award — Phani Tej Adidam, professor and chair in the Department of Marketing and Entrepreneurship, University of Nebraska at Omaha;

Outstanding Research and Creative Activity Award — Jonathan Vennerstrom, professor in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Nebraska Medical Center; and

Innovation, Development and Engagement Award — Benson Edagwa, associate professor in the Department of Pharmacology and Experimental Neuroscience, UNMC.

University-wide Departmental Teaching Award — UNMC’s Department of Physical Therapy

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Read more about the individual faculty and departmental awards.



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