The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

Meet One of the Men Running Against the ‘Cornhusker Kickback’


Over on the home page, an interview with Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning, who’s running for Senate in 2012, hoping to knock off Sen. Ben Nelson, well known for the “Cornhusker Kickback.”

I liked his answer when I asked him about law school writings that would have put him solidly on the liberal end of the political spectrum:

NRO: Your career spans almost two decades, so you have a lot of moments to choose from, but was there a key event in your transition from a liberal to a conservative?

BRUNING: They were the same ones that are common to a lot of young people. You begin to pay your first taxes and you wonder who FICA is and why he’s taking such a big chunk out of your paycheck. You fall in love and get married. All of those things happened for me about the same time. And when you start to think about the future of your family and wonder where your tax dollars are going and how they’re being spent, that can make a conservative out of you pretty quickly.I always hearken back to the old Churchill quote, “If you’re not a liberal at 20, you have no heart; if you’re not a conservative at 40, you have no brain.” I think that applies to a lot of us. There are certainly a number people who are fortunate enough to have their parents help pay for college, and they don’t think too much about where the money comes from and where it goes. I was one of those young people. Once my parents kicked me from the nest . . . a little personal responsibility will cause you to look at things in a different light very quickly.

Bruning is expected to face state Treasurer Don Stenberg in the GOP primary.

UPDATE: Don Stenberg made it official today.

Tags: Ben Nelson , Don Stenberg , Jon Bruning


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