Nebraska Republicans appear to have enough votes to ban abortions & more

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) — The Nebraska Legislature appears to have a filibuster-proof majority.

Republicans have claimed 33 of its 49 seats as of the latest vote count in the 2022 General Election.

The red wave did happen in Nebraska,” said Eric Underwood, chairman of the Nebraska GOP.

Kevin Smith, a political science professor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln says controversial bills that didn’t get passed last legislative session now have a better chance of passing in next year’s legislative session.

“Things like abortion restrictions and concealed carry legislation, I think the probabilities of those sort of things passing in the legislature went up,” Smith said. 

A total abortion ban was one of the most heated proposals coming out of the last legislative session.

The trigger bill that would have eventually banned the procedure in Nebraska came just two votes short of the 33 needed to overcome a filibuster.

The bill did not permit abortions in cases involving rape and incest.

Another measure would have allowed people to carry concealed weapons without a state permit or even training.  It also fell just two votes short.

Supporters of both of those bills have vowed to reintroduce similar legislation at the next session.

There could also be big changes coming to the very rules that guide the legislature.  Republicans have been pushing to make votes for committee leadership positions public.

Opponents say secret ballots are crucial for bipartisanship.  Committees have the power to decide what legislation is debated on the floor and what gets postponed.

The Democrat Party Executive Director Precious McKesson said despite the results, they are excited for the incumbents that won re-election and are proud of the races their candidates ran.

“Right now, we are holding on our firewall against the GOP in the legislature,” she said.  

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