Jeff Fortenberry’s Dishonest Re-Election Campaign

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Fortenberry abused his power by pressuring the Lincoln Police Department to prosecute his critics.

For the first time in over a decade, Jeff Fortenberry is matched up against a well known and well funded challenger. State Senator Kate Bolz is the most formidable opponent that Fortenberry has faced since the 2006 cycle when he defeated former lieutenant governor Maxine Moul.

Fortenberry has responded to this tough election cycle by waging a scorched earth campaign of lies and smears. After 16 years of accomplishing virtually nothing, Fortenberry is running a vicious campaign of deception to distract us from his sorry record.

I will post Fortenberry’s most mendacious claims and rebut them with fact checking. History doesn’t begin when Fortenberry runs a dishonest TV or radio ad funded by out of state, special interest campaign cash.

LIE: Fortenberry ran a radio ad in which he attacked Bolz for missing a vote on a 2020 bill that would have banned teacher-student sex.

FACT CHECK: What Fortenberry didn’t tell you was that Kate was taking an excused absence after she had been around somebody who tested positive for Covid-19. Kate was in quarantine waiting for the results of a corona virus test. Fortunately, she tested negative.

LIE: A Fortenberry TV ad falsely contended that Kate was “silent” when so-called “angry mobs” vandalized downtown Lincoln and Omaha and threatened the police.

FACT CHECK: Kate was endorsed by the Fraternal Order of Police when she ran for the legislature. According to the Lincoln Journal Star: “In fact, she responded on a blog post, the senator said, and then attended a post-event cleanup in Lincoln following a protest demonstration, a community event at the Malone Center and a subsequent hearing on the issue conducted by the Legislature’s Judiciary Committee.”

LIES: In 2018, Fortenberry ran a deceptive TV ad in which he claimed that he supported pre-existing condition protections. In a recent interview with the Omaha World Herald, the long time CD-01 incumbent claimed he wanted to “repair” the Affordable Care Act, not replace it. In addition, Fortenberry stated: “The bottom line is that everyone should have access to affordable health care.”

FACT CHECK: These are the biggest lies of Fortenberry’s nasty campaign. The former Louisiana native has voted approximately 60 times to repeal the Affordable Care Act without a replacement plan. That would have taken away insurance from 20 million Americans and brought back the insurance industry’s hated pre-existing condition clauses.

Four years later, in 2017, Fortenberry voted for the Trump Care bill that would’ve thrown 20 million people off insurance coverage and gutted pre-existing condition protections. The bill was so bad that Fortenberry and the other House Republicans voted to exempt themselves from it. The House Republicans only reversed course after they got caught.

In 2019, the CD01 incumbent voted two times in support of the Trump/Ricketts lawsuit aimed at invalidating the entire Affordable Care Act by judicial fiat. If Fortenberry “wins” his case, 23 million Americans would lose insurance and pre-existing condition protections would be eliminated during the middle of the worst pandemic since 1918!

Fortenberry’s votes in favor of Trump and Ricketts’ reckless lawsuit is especially relevant in light of the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. Coney Barret wrote a recent law review article that criticized the 2012 Supreme Court decision that held that the Affordable Care Act was constitutional.

Vote! Apply for your vote by mail ballot early. Send it in early or drop it off at the election commissioner’s office. Don’t let Trump and Fortenberry steal your vote, steal the election or steal your future.

This is our time! Let’s repeal and replace Fortenberry! Let’s send Kate Bolz to Washington!

I’m a trial lawyer, a Democratic activist and a sports fan.

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