So long. Farewell. Auf wiedersehen, goodnight. Conservative Democrat Senator Ben Nelson (NB) announced yesterday that he would not seek re-election in 2012.
I'd like to say that the loss of a stalwart Democrat in the Senate upsets me, but this jerk was as bad as Evan Bayh at undermining any progressive issues. The only real difference between Nelson and a Republican who might replace him is who they'll vote for as Senate Majority Leader.
Nelson, 70, said in a statement that it was time to "step away from elective office, spend more time with my family, and look for ways to serve our state and nation."
"Simply put: It is time to move on," Nelson said in the statement.
His departure increases the difficulty for Democrats to retain their Senate majority next year.
The Dems spent over a million dollars this year alone to prop up Nelson's approval ratings and help ensure he wins re-election. As usual, the recalcitrant Senator fucked them over in the end. The real hoot comes at the end of the CNN article though:
"Public office is a place for public service, not personal profit," Nelson's statement said. "It's about promoting the common good, not the agenda of the radical right or the radical left. It's about fairness for all, not privileges for the few. And, it's about protecting the rights of individuals, even if it angers the majority.
His HRC scorecard, which measures how Congressmembers have voted on issues of equality, was 11% in the 109th Congress (2009) and 65% in the 110th Congress (2010). Nelson was known for voting solely on the interests of Nebraska citizens instead of the nation as a whole.