Fischer Win Makes Clean Sweep for Nebraska GOP


Deb Fischer's win is one for the history books, making it a clean sweep for Nebraska Republicans, who now hold every statewide office. Democrats are completely shut out for the first time in four decades.

With five Republicans representing the state, Sen. Mike Johanns said they will work together as a team.

"No two senators will work harder to represent their state than the Fischer–Johanns team in Washington, I promise you," Johanns told Republican supporters.

With Sen. Ben Nelson retiring, Bob Kerrey was the Democrats best bet at holding on to that senate seat. But he was defeated by Deb Fischer, a two-term state senator.

Gov. Dave Heineman said, "This is a historic night. It's probably the first time in 40 years that all five members of our delegation are Republicans."

But they head to a divided congress. Republicans control the house and Democrats have the edge in the senate, not to mention a Democrat in the Oval Office.

Johanns told NTV, "At the end of the day it'll be a very closely divided senate."

Will that result in gridlock?

Heineman said, "I hope they'll all sit down and work together – house, senate, whoever the president is we've got a lot of problems in this country, particularly as it relates to the economy, we need to work together to find solutions."

Rep. Adrian Smith agreed with that assessment. He said, "We've got to avoid a fiscal cliff that is looming. Regardless how we look at it, it is looming. We need to get beyond that."

But even the five Republicans don't always see eye to eye.

"There might be some issues we disagree on, moving forward, but in large part it's a basic philosophy we share that's reflective of Nebraska," Smith said.

For a period in the '70s, Nebraska had two Democrats in the senate, and at least one since 1976. That includes Edward Zorkinsky, Jim Exon, Bob Kerrey, and Ben Nelson.

That run comes to an end, with Deb Fischer's win. She pledged to work in the best interest of the country.

"We've faced challenges before and we conquered them and we'll do it again," she said.

Fischer is the third woman to serve Nebraska in the senate. However, Eva Bowring and Hazel Abel served the same year, 1954, for a combined eight months following a death in office.