Nebraska voters head to the polls Tuesdays to cast ballots in primaries for governor, the House of Representatives, attorney general and secretary of state.
Polls open at 9 a.m. and close at 9 p.m. ET.
Secretary of State Robert Evnen predicted voter turnout would be around 35% based on early ballots. As of Monday, there had been 227,679 early ballot requests processed, including ballots sent to all-mail precincts and counties. A total of 122,679 ballots had been returned.
Even though Nebraska is a reliable red state, the GOP primary for governor is another test of the endorsement power of former President Donald Trump, who has chosen to back wealthy businessman Charles Herbster — holding a rally for Herbster as recently as last week.
Eight women, including GOP state Sen. Julie Slama, have accused Herbster of sexual assault — allegations he has denied. The question is whether Trump’s support will be enough for voters to see past the allegations and break with the GOP establishment, which has put its weight behind another candidate.
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While Trump has backed Herbster, term-limited Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts and other state party leaders have rallied around businessman Jim Pillen. Complicating things further is a third contender in the race, state Sen. Brett Lindstrom, who has gained traction partly due to his endorsement from the mayor of Omaha, Nebraska’s largest city.
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The “big lie” also overshadows this race. Not only has Herbster pushed the false claim that Trump won the 2020 election, but he also attend the “Stop the Steal” rally in Washington, D.C., that preceded the attack at the Capitol.
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