From the New Nebraska Network:
There's a lot of talk about Republican candidates distancing themselves from their party's presidential nominee - Mitt Romney - after video surfaced of him attacking 47% of the population as "dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to healthcare, to food, to housing, to you name it." Romney also explained that he didn't care about these people because: "I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives."
In U.S. history, you'd be hard-pressed finding a single statement exhibiting more contempt for more Americans by a presidential nominee - especially so soon before an election when writing off close to 50% of the population looks suspiciously like campaign suicide. Republican candidates across the country recognize this and have taken steps to prevent Romney's attack on 47% of Americans from becoming a suicide pact. That's what we've seen in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Nevada, Hawaii, Virginia, and even North Dakota.
But, I don't think it was clear just how bad things really are until the one 2012 candidate Republicans are proclaiming a near-lock to take a Democratic Senate seat felt it necessary to distance herself from her party's nominee. That's Deb Fischer - right here in Nebraska.
Yes, Democrats and the national press can now add the heavilly favored Deb Fischer to the list of GOP candidates running away from Romney. Had they been listening to Fischer's Thursday interview on conservative talk radio program "Drive Time Lincoln", they would have heard the following:
Drive Time Lincoln: "The Republican candidate for president, Mitt Romney...made some comments at a fundraiser....The "47% comments" related to those getting some form of government help and something along the lines of him not caring about their votes saying that they feel they're victims. What do you make of those comments?"Fischer may not go so far as denouncing Romney, but she certainly went to lengths distinguishing her position from those "47% comments." It's just unfortunate that Fischer's actual record in the Nebraska Legislature shows little more regard for Romney's 47% - even if she's never shown them quite so much outrageous disrespect.
Deb Fischer (R-NE): "You know, I'm running my own campaign and I have my own perspective on that. People who have followed my career in the Legislature know that I believe it's very important for government to set priorities. One of those responsibilities of government is helping those who truly can't help themselves."
No doubt, this whole incident has been an absolute disaster for Romney's presidential campaign. It's also a terrible sign for the Republican Party and a huge blow to their efforts to take control of both houses of Congress. Even in Nebraska, Fischer's approach suggests she's not so confident about winning in November as might have been expected from the early polling of her race with Bob Kerrey. I'd say Fischer's on to something - she can't afford to embrace and defend Romney because this race is still very far from over.