By Deena Winter | Nebraska Watchdog
Updated 9:43 a.m.
LINCOLN – Lincoln Mayor Chris Beutler did not rule out a run for governor or the U.S. Senate today in a radio interview.
Beutler said it’s become difficult for him to think about running for other offices because he’s “developed this love affair with the city” and all the historic changes occurring in Lincoln.
“It would be very difficult to make a change at this moment,” Beutler said on KLIN’s “Jack & Dave in the Morning” show.
Former Nebraska Sen. Bob Kerrey also told KFAB in Omaha today he wouldn’t rule out a Senate run, but said it was “considerably less likely” he’d run this time around. Kerrey was soundly defeated by Republican Deb Fischer in the Nebraska Senate race in November.
Beutler was a state senator for 24 years and unsuccessfully ran for governor in 1986, losing the Democratic primary to Helen Boosalis. His second term as mayor ends in 2015, but he is not constrained by term limits and could run for a third term.
Beutler acknowledged being a governor or U.S. senator is the pinnacle for a politician – the place where “you could do the most good and would like to end up being” – but he added, “sometimes things happen to those ambitions” and other things become more important.
The chairman of the state Democratic Party, Vince Powers, has repeatedly mentioned Beutler as a potential candidate for governor, along with former University of Nebraska Regent Chuck Hassebrook, Omaha Sen. Steve Lathrop and Fullerton Sen. Annette Dubas.
“I am where I am and I’m happy and when times like this come along, there’s a lot of tugging on your arms, so you politely listen,” Beutler said. “It’s hard not to listen.”
Editor’s note: to subscribe to News Updates from Nebraska Watchdog at no cost, click here.