It’s official, Rahm Emanuel is leaving the White House today to run for mayor of Chicago. The now former Chief of Staff had no shortage of memorable moments.  He’ll be replaced by Pete Rouse, Obama’s Chief of Staff from his Senate years.  We expect the swear-jar in the West Wing will see a severe drop in funding.  Here’s your Roundup:

Bold Roundup

 It All Comes Down to Motive: State Senator Cap Dierks is raising questions about his challenger’s motives for moving to Holt County and running for state legislature.  His opponent, Tyson Larson, is just inside the state requirement to live one year in a district before representing it.  But Larson’s basically been campaigning since he moved in.  We could care less that Larson’s not a Holt native (xenophobia is unattractive in any cut), but residents ought to question his motives for running so soon.  View Here

Teachers Are People, Too: The new documentary “Waiting for Superman” is picking up a lot of buzz.  The movie is about our crumbling education system and the students it’s failing.  It also is very harsh on teachers and teachers unions.  Maddie Fennell offers a dissenting voice in the OWH.  She says the problem isn’t that we’re calling out the bad teachers, it’s that we aren’t talking to the good ones.  Good teachers are one of the most important foundations in a community. We’d suggest talking with one after you watch “Waiting for Superman.”  View Here

Gubernatorial Race Crosses the Pipeline: Dave Heineman’s mean-girl colors are really starting to come out.  After Mike Meister challenged Heineman’s silence on the pipeline, Heineman said, “Mr. Meister should be in contact with Sen. (Ben) Nelson, asking him to call his favorite president, Barack Obama, to intervene.”  Wow, talk about a juvenile reaction.  Heineman’s totally flippant attitude about Nebraska farmers’ livelihood is unacceptable.  View Here

Tracking the Money: Thanks to the Citizens United ruling, campaign money is getting passed out faster than Halloween candy.  Keeping track of it all is insanely difficult, but there are a few cases that make headlines.  We know News Corp., the parent company of Fox News, already gave $1 million to the Republican Governors Association.  Campaign finance reports now show that they have also given $1 million to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.  Politico says it’s unusual for a media company to give so much and to just one side.  View Here


Thursday, September 30th

Joe Biden’s coming to Omaha today!  The VP will be in town to fundraise for Tom White and then heads to New Mexico to help their Democratic candidate for Governor.  Biden’s whirlwind trip to Omaha made it onto Politico this morning.  We wish they had used a better picture of White.  The one on Lee Terry’s campaign lit is actually a really good one.  Here’s your Roundup:

GOP Blocks More Jobs: Senate Republicans blocked another attempt to extend an “emergency fund” created by the stimulus to put poor parents to work via the Temporary Assistance for Need Families Program.  The program’s been estimated to have created over 240,000 jobs.  Democrats have been trying to reauthorize it since March.  Blocking vulnerable people from getting work, doesn’t the GOP get tired of being a broken record?  View Here

Baucus Suspicious of Conservative Non-Profits: The Senator from Montana, and head of the Finance Committee, wants the IRS to look into some shady non-profit groups that might be focused more on winning elections than educating the public.  Baucus is particularly leery of a group of conservative leaning 501(c)4 groups.  If we see any money from them show up in Nebraska, we expect an apology from Mark Fahleson for his serious double-standard.  View Here

SolveClimate Covers the Hotline: SolveClimate News post a full story on the launch of the TransCanada Abuse hotline.  It’s part of series they’re doing that will be about the proposed pipeline.  This is the first piece, we’ll keep an eye out for more.  View Here

Who’s the DC Puppet: Joe Jordan’s headline is “White Won’t Say ‘No Pelosi.’ ”  But we’re more fascinated by the Michael Steele-Lee Terry connection.  Terry keeps trying to campaign as an outsider, but Senate Minority Leader John Boehner (who snuck in and out undercover) and now the Chairman of the Republican National Committee have come to Omaha to help him out.  How do you pretend to be an outsider when you were in the majority for 2/3 of your political career and major party leaders show up to endorse you?  View Here


Wednesday, September 29th

It’s National Coffee Day, so pour yourself an extra steaming cup of jo today.  If you’re trying to quit the caffeine like some of us, reach for the decaf.  As far as we know, Starbucks isn’t celebrating with any special offers (bummer).  However, the Pumpkin Spice Latte has returned, so that means it’s officially Fall.  Here’s your Roundup:

Tomato Trendsetters: Our favorite tomato supplier, Garden Fresh Vegetables, is working its way into several school cafeterias in the Omaha metro.  It’s all part of a movement to use more locally grown produce in school meals.  Some support will come from a $5.7 million federal grant which is also being used by Live Well Omaha (we mentioned them in yesterday’s Roundup).  We hope it’s a great success for local farmers, schools and kids.  View Here

Windmills, Not Oil Spills: It’s our mantra for fighting the TransCanada pipeline, but it’s also a green energy solution that we’d like to see more of in Nebraska.  Fortunately, construction is about to begin on the Broken Bow wind farm.  OPPD, LES, Municipal Energy Agency of Nebraska and Grand Island Utilities have all expressed interest in buying some of the wind farm’s generation.  Looks like the wind farm will generate more than energy; it’s already generating interest.  View Here

A Little Bit of History Repeating: Well, maybe more than a bit.  The OWH republished a killer article from Salon columnist Joe Conason about the GOP’s Contract With America 2.0 (aka, “Pledge to America”).  Not only are the promises in the contract eerily similar, Conason points out that the aftermath may be, too.  We’re not talking election results, more like expensive witch hunts investigating the executive branch.  All that money and the best they got was the Lewinski scandal.  Sure, it kept us glued to the TV, but we’d hardly call it governing.  View Here

Don’t Say We Didn’t Warn You: A good rule of thumb is not tick off the ACLU, it usually ends badly for you.  That’s the advice we offer to the Lyons-Decatur Northeast schools who are letting Keith Becker speak, despite warnings from the ACLU that he’s crossing the line by proselytizing during his presentations.  Becker sneaks in references to the Bible while discussing making good choices about alcohol.  We want kids to make good choices too, but surely there’s a way to get that message across without the religious undertones.  View Here

Fair and Balanced: We certainly don’t claim to be balanced, but we figured it might be interesting to balance out the seven page interview with Obama from Rolling Stone with an equally long piece on a beloved conservative figure.  We bring you a 10 page story on Glenn Beck from the New York Times.  Coming up next?  We hope a 20 page story with Lindsay Lohan in O, the Oprah magazine.  View Here gets a makeover.


Tuesday, September 28th

Today’s the National Day of Youth Voter Registration, and we’re celebrating by registering voters and collecting voter pledges at UNL’s Student Union today.  Stop by and get everything you need to know about casting your ballot on election day.  Here’s your Roundup:

Tarsands Mini Doc: Tired of reading about tarsands oil and landowners getting short shrift from TransCanada?  Stop Tarsands Oil Pipeline (STOP for short) has the solution.  The group has put together a 15 minute documentary about tarsands oil and landowners in Texas who have been strong-armed by TransCanada.  View Here

We’re Not the Only Ones with Sass: South Dakota’s got their own sassy blog in the Madville Times.  Yesterday the author questioned the validity of TransCanada’s “independent study” that says the pipeline will generate millions in business activity and tax revenue.  Anyone who can make a quality Steve Jarding reference is good in our book.  View Here

Need to Burn Time?: Then check out this Rolling Stone interview with Obama.  Questions range from the President’s thoughts on Fox News to what’s on his iPod (hey, it’s a music magazine). The online story is seven pages long, so tackle this one in pieces.  View Here

Omaha Gets Healthy: A new group called Live Well Omaha wants to improve Douglas County residents’ health.  The group is working on an ad campaign and several projects to encourage exercise and healthy eating.  View Here

Good Thing Gradeschoolers Don’t Vote: Otherwise Obama would have a revolt on his hands. The president is pushing once again for longer school years.  US high schools average 180 instruction days per year.  Compare that to the 197 instruction days in countries with better student achievement levels.  While youngsters may resist a slightly longer school year, it’s hard to argue with giving kids a fighting chance in today’s global job search.  View Here


Monday, September 27th

Early Voting ballots will be arriving in mailboxes soon (in the Cornhusker state we call them “Early Voting”, not absentee, ballots).  It’s not too late to register to vote or apply for an Early Voting ballot.  We’ve got all you need right here.  While you’re at it, pledge to vote again in 2010.  We’ve also got a voter guide in the works, so we can be your one-stop-shop on Election Day.  Here’s your Roundup:

Oh Bother: The LJS editorial board is hopping mad about the delayed food safety bill in the Senate.  We feel your pain, LJS.  This is the sort of bipartisan, common-sense legislation that should have passed a long time ago.  But Senator Coburn’s holding things up, and Majority Leader Harry Reid is torn between passing more legislation now or waiting until after elections. We’ll keep you updated if the stalemate changes.  View Here

Terry Toes the Line: We love it when Joe Jordan holds candidates accountable.  In a pretty harsh new post, Nebraska Watchdog questions (if not condemns) the accuracy of Lee Terry’s latest ad that says Tom White voted to raise his own salary.  Watchdog interviewed several Republican state senators.  John Nelson thinks Terry’s ad barely passes muster, but Brad Ashford says it’s totally false.  We’d like to point out that Terry’s selective editing of White’s quote is worse than Andrew Breitbart’s hack job on Shirley Sherrod.  View Here

More Fact Checking Please: While Watchdog’s on the White/Terry race like white on rice, is holding the GOP’s “Pledge to America” up to the light.  The major misdeeds: generously rounding up the cost of the stimulus, pretty much claiming there’s been no growth in the private sector and continuing bogus anti-health reform claims.  You’d think with a plethora of interns and staffers at their disposal, they’d double check that sort of thing.  View Here

America Still Wants Change: A new AP Poll shows that the number of Americans who want health reform to do more outnumbers those who want it do less 2-to-1.  The number of people who oppose the law is still high, but the poll also found a deep thirst for change.  What’s this tell us?  We ought to see more ads touting health reform, and threats to repeal reform aren’t selling. View Here