Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Kamala Harris have now reached the 270 electoral vote threshold and are headed to the White House! The historic win in Nebraska’s 2nd Congressional District on Tuesday gave the Biden-Harris team a precious electoral vote that helped pave the way to a hard-fought victory.
“Nebraskans can stand proud knowing we had a role in today’s historic moment of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris hitting 270 electoral votes,” said Nebraska Democratic Chair Jane Kleeb.
“Our national party, under the leadership of Chair Tom Perez, invested real money into red state parties so we could run innovative programs like our Block Captains and Candidates of Color Fund. Organizing year-round, with candidates that look and sound like their communities, is what wins elections. We intend to use the momentum of the Jomaha Blue Dot to win statewide and build back relationships with rural voters, closing the gap that for too long has led to one-party rule in too many states.”
Precious McKesson, the NE2 Elector, will cast her ballot for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on Dec. 14 at the State Capitol in Lincoln, Nebraska. She will be the first African-American and first woman to cast an electoral vote for a Democratic candidate.
“As a single mother and caregiver to my disabled brother, I am what everyday, hardworking Nebraskans look like,” said Precious McKesson. “I will walk proudly into the room to cast my ballot for Nebraskans who deserve better than what Trump and the Republican Party have given us these last four, very long, years.”
Key Electoral Highlights:
- The battleground state that showed the largest shift from Trump was indeed Nebraska’s Second District. We saw a massive nine percent shift from 2016 to 2020.
- Nebraska broke all recent records for voter turnout with nearly 74 percent of registered voters casting their ballots in-person and via the mail.
- The Secretary of State’s office said some 935,000 votes were cast — more than 68,000 voters than in 2016.
- In District 3, Sen. Carol Blood won re-election. We are monitoring the final provisional ballot counts which should be public in the coming days.
- In District 5, Sen. Mike McDonnell won re-election.
- In District 7, Sen. Tony Vargas won re-election.
- In District 9, Democrat John Cavanaugh won the election.
- In District 11, Democrat Terrell McKinney won the election.
- In District 13, Sen. Justin Wayne won re-election.
- In District 15, Sen. Lynne Walz won re-election.
- In District 27, Sen. Anna Wishart won re-election.
- In District 29, Democrat Eliot Bostar won the election unseating Ricketts’ funded candidate Jacob Campbell.
- In District 49, Democrat Jen Day won her bid to unseat incumbent and Ricketts’ appointee Andrew La Grone. We are monitoring the final provisional ballot counts which should be public in the coming days.
In Other Races:
- In the District 1 State Board of Education race, Patsy Koch Johns won re-election.
- In the District 2 State Board of Education race, Lisa Fricke won re-election.
- In the District 4 State Board of Education race, Jacquelyn Morrison won.
Kara Eastman narrowly lost her bid to block Republican Rep. Don Bacon’s bid for a second term and state Sen. Kate Bolz came up short in her bid to prevent a ninth term for GOP Rep. Jeff Fortenberry.
“Of course we’re disappointed, but we are so proud of the Biden team, Kara Eastman, Kate Bolz and our NDP staff and volunteers who helped us throughout this campaign,” Kleeb said. “We are proud to have them both at the table to continue to build the party.”
Where Biden Won:
- CD2: Current Secretary of State results show Biden with 166,224 votes and Trump with 145,538 — a margin of 20,686 votes. Hillary Clinton lost the district to Trump by 6,534 votes in 2016. Joe Biden netted 27,220 more votes than Clinton and won the district and electoral vote. Hillary’s share of the overall vote in CD2 was just under 45 percent and Biden’s was over 52 percent.
- Lancaster County: Current SoS results show Biden with 80,513 votes and Trump’s 68,321 — a margin of 12,192 votes. Clinton beat Trump by 310 votes in 2016. As of now, Joe Biden has won the county by almost 40 times Hillary’s margin in raw votes. By percentage points, Clinton won more than 45 percent of the Lancaster County vote, and so far Biden has won nearly 53 percent — an improvement of 7.4 points.
- Nebraska Democrats closed the gap statewide as well. In 2016, Trump won the state by 25 percent points. In 2020 ,that was narrowed to 19 percent.Background on NE2:
- This will be the second time in Nebraska’s history that voters award an electoral vote to a Democratic candidate.
- Nebraska and Maine are the only states to award their electoral votes to the winner of each congressional district.
- The coveted “Blue Dot” was last won by Barack Obama in 2008.
- Statewide Democratic Early Vote: As of the last early vote file from the Secretary of State (SoS), nearly 187,000 early ballots from registered Democrats had been returned. In 2016, the number was 79,376. That is a massive percentage increase of more than 135 percent.
- Statewide Early Vote Growth: According to official SoS results, nearly 221,000 total early votes were cast in 2016. In 2020, nearly 511,000 ballots have been returned.
The number of early votes from registered Democrats in 2020 counted so far are equal to roughly 85 percent of all early votes in 2016.
- Youth Early Vote: As of the last early vote file from the SoS, almost 90,000 voters under 35 had returned early ballots. In 2016, approximately 33,000 ballots had been returned by voters under 35. This is a massive increase in participation by younger voters — almost 174 percent.
- Young Dems: What’s more, the increase in participation among young registered Democrats was higher (roughly 36,392 this year and 12,540 in 2016). Participation almost tripled from 2016 to 2020. For the GOP, there were about 30,400 in 2020, compared to 12,800 in 2016. This shows growth with younger voters for the Democratic Party.
Our state party, county parties and campaigns sent over two million mail pieces, contacted voters over 1.5 million times at the doors, phones and texts, distributed over 200,000 Voter Guides so Nebraskans know who the Democrats are from the top to the bottom of the ballot and we’ve handed out almost 50,000 yard signs.
We had more than 550 Democrats running up and down the ticket in Nebraska.
Our state party is growing every day and the infrastructure built in 2020 will help us win elections in 2021. We are prepared to take on statewide elections in 2022 with plans to aggressively win back rural voters.