Pete Ricketts will replace Ben Sasse as Nebraska’s next senator

Former Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts, a Republican, was named Thursday as the state’s next senator, replacing fellow Republican Ben Sasse, who resigned this week. To become President of the University of Florida.

Mr. Ricketts was picked for the Senate seat by his successor in the governor’s office, Jim Billen, whose campaign he helped fund last year.

Mister which ends in 2026. A special election will be held in 2024 to fill the seat for the remainder of Sasse’s term. That means if Mr. Ricketts wants to stay in the Senate, he will have to run in a special election. in 2024, and then again in 2026 for the full term.

58 year old Mr. Ricketts served two terms as governor, from 2015 to this month. Mr. After Sasse announced his resignation last year, he was widely expected to take the Senate seat. Gained support quickly From Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Republican leader.

The Ricketts family has long been very powerful in the insular world of Nebraska politics. Ricketts’ father, Joe Ricketts, founder and former chief executive of financial services firm TD Ameritrade, is a major donor to Republican candidates and causes across the country.

Pete Ricketts has spent at least $1.3 million in the past year A tight Republican primary for governor, Mr. Helping Billan while attacking his two main enemies. Mr. Billon narrowly won The party’s nomination of a Trump-backed candidate and a relatively moderate one later went on to win the general election.

Mr. Billon, Mr. He solicited applications from Nebraskans interested in replacing Sass, and said he considered several candidates.

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“We took this process incredibly seriously,” he said. According to the Nebraska Examiner. “The criteria for me is very simple. The nominee must represent us as a people.

But Mr Ricketts never had much doubt that he would get the job if he wanted it.

At a Florida meeting of Republican governors in late November, Mr. Ricketts played down his interest in the Senate seat, saying, “We’ll see what happens.”

Three weeks later, he applied for the appointment.

Rachel Shorey Contributed report.

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