Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Nebraska Republicans Say No to Osborne

Tom Osborne didn't experience losing often as Nebraska's coach and was 3-0 in the political arena, representing the state's Third District in the U.S. Congress since 2000. But Osborne lost his bid Tuesday to become Nebraska's governor in a humbling defeat to incumbent Dave Heineman in the Republican primary. At age 69, his political career has likely reached a dead end. Heineman, 57, finished with 50.43% of the vote, with Osborne getting 44.22% and Dave Nabity, 47, getting 5.35%. While Osborne carried Omaha and Lincoln, Heineman secured his victory by winning the rural counties. It was a stunning defeat for Osborne, given that polls had indicated a statistical dead heat between himself and Heineman entering Tuesday. "This is a tough one to take," Osborne told the Omaha World-Herald. "It's hard and, I guess, it's always hard to lose the last one." Said Loree Bykerk, a political science professor at the University of Nebraska at Omaha: "When Osborne threw his hat into the ring, I don't remember anyone thinking he would lose. People were saying things like, 'Running against him was like running against God.' " ... Heineman will face Democratic nominee David Hahn, 50, in November (some registration).

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