Election Recap from the NVMA Lobbyist

A recap of the November 6, 2018 election from the NVMA lobbying firm of Zulkoski-Weber:

Happy post-election day! Nebraska’s legislative race results are now available on our website, along with information about the candidates: 


Following yesterday's election, 12 of the body's 49 Senators will be brand new when the Legislature convenes on January 9, 2019. Ten new senators were elected. Senator Dan Watermeier narrowly won election to the Public Service Commission, and Senator John Murante was elected State Treasurer; the Governor will make appointments to fill these two legislative vacancies. Thirty Senators—more than 60 percent of the body—will begin the session with less than two years’ experience as a state legislator. Senator Steve Lathrop will be re-joining the body, after defeating sitting Senator Merv Riepe for the Ralston-area seat, adding his eight years of past experience.

The defeat of the Legislature's only Libertarian and the loss of two Republican-held seats in Omaha changed the partisan makeup of the body from 32 Republicans; 15 Democrats; 1 Libertarian; and 1 independent to 30 Republicans; 18 Democrats; and 1 independent. The procedural voting block of a "filibuster" requires only 17 votes, so both parties (if voting were to break down party lines) now have that option more readily available.

Governor Ricketts was reelected with 59.37% of the vote, defeating Senator Bob Krist who carried 40.63% of voters.

Nebraska voters approved Medicaid expansion by a margin of 53.25% versus 46.75%. The Legislature will now be responsible for implementation and funding. Recent estimates from the legislative fiscal office envision $1.3 billion in federal funding flowing into the state during the first three years of Medicaid expansion, with state matching funds totaling $90.8 million over that period.

2019 Nebraska Unicameral Legislature by district number

To illustrate the new make-up of the body, we have noted those senators who are new or who have served for less than two years.

*Indicates brand new Senator

Bold indicates Senator has served for less than two years

  1. District 1 Appointee*
  2. Clements, Robert
  3. Blood, Carol
  4. Hilkemann, Robert
  5. McDonnell, Mike
  6. Cavanaugh, Machaela*
  7. Vargas, Tony
  8. Hunt, Megan* 
  9. Howard, Sara
  10. DeBoer, Wendy*
  11. Chambers, Ernie
  12. Lathrop, Steve
  13. Wayne, Justin
  14. Arch, John*
  15. Walz, Lynne
  16. Hansen, Ben*
  17. Albrecht, Joni
  18. Lindstrom, Brett
  19. Scheer, Jim
  20. McCollister, John
  21. Hilgers, Mike
  22. Moser, Mike*
  23. Bostelman, Bruce
  24. Kolterman, Mark
  25. Geist, Suzanne
  26. Hansen, Matt
  27. Wishart, Anna
  28. Pansing Brooks, Patty
  29. Bolz, Kate
  30. Dorn, Myron*
  31. Kolowski, Rick
  32. Brandt, Tom*
  33. Halloran, Steve
  34. Friesen, Curt
  35. Quick, Dan
  36. Williams, Matt
  37. Lowe, John
  38. Murman, Dave*
  39. Linehan, Lou Ann
  40. Gragert, Tim*
  41. Briese, Tom
  42. Groene, Mike
  43. Brewer, Tom
  44. Hughes, Dan
  45. Crawford, Sue
  46. Morfeld, Adam
  47. Erdman, Steve
  48. Stinner, John
  49. District 49 Appointee*