By: Ashley Harding
Lieutenant Governor Rick Sheehy had been considered a front runner for the Republican bid for governor in this next election. No doubt, his sudden resignation has shaken up the race. Mark Fahleson with the Nebraska Republican Party says if Sheehy does drop out, there are plenty of options.
"That's one thing we're very, from the Republican standpoint, we're very fortunate. We have a very long and deep bench. Lots of quality candidates, so it'll be a very competitive primary," says Fahleson.
Some leaders had thought of Rick Sheehy as a "shoo-in" to succeed Governor Dave Heineman at the end of his term. Last December, he became the only Republican in the race after former speaker Mike Flood dropped out to care for his wife, who is battling breast cancer. Some other Republican names that have come up for discussion include attorney general Jon Bruning and state auditor Mike Foley. So far, no Democrats have announced any plans to run for governor. But some Democrats we spoke with say they have ideas on who they think might make a good candidate.
"Bob Kerrey. He's just one of the Democrats I support and he's been very good for Nebraska," says Caroline Barr.
"State senator Amanda McGill, because I like her ideas and I like groups she supports," says Deanna Harris.
Others we spoke with say their main concern is finding a candidate who will work hard for the good of the state. No matter what party.
"I want somebody that's willing to work for the people. I don't really care about Democrats or Republican, necessarily. We need someone who can work together, to actually work on solving problems," says Jeff Pietzyk.
We reached out to Sheehy's office, but did not receive a response. Starting Monday, Governor Heineman says he'll begin looking for Sheehy's replacement.