Nebraska: Bruning Won’t Seek Open Senate Seat

Bruning won't run for the Senate. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Bruning won't run for the Senate. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Posted March 4, 2013 at 1:53pm

Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning, one of several Republicans considered potential candidates for the state’s open Senate seat, will forgo a bid for retiring Sen. Mike Johanns’ seat.

Bruning said he will seek re-election next year and described a Senate campaign as “extremely unlikely,” according to the Omaha World-Herald.

Several Republicans continue to mull bids for this GOP-held Senate seat including, most notably, Gov. Dave Heineman, who earlier expressed interest in running but has not announced a decision yet.

Possible GOP contenders include state Auditor Mike Foley; state Treasurer Don Stenberg; Republican Reps. Jeff Fortenberry, Adrian Smith and Lee Terry; businessman Pete Ricketts; and former state Treasurer Shane Osborn.

If Heineman does not run, Republicans expect several candidates to run for the seat.

Bruning lost in the 2012 Senate GOP primary, even though Republicans considered him to be the front-runner for much of the race. Sen. Deb Fischer defeated Bruning and Stenberg in the primary.