Nebraska Republican Senator Ben Sasse released a 5-½ minute video Thursday night lashing out against GOP leaders in the state who want to censure him over critical comments against former President Donald Trump.
The Scotts Bluff County Republican Party has already passed a censure resolution rebuking Sasse and the chair of the Hitchcock County party is proposing the state central committee do the same when it meets later this month.
Sasse has strongly criticized Trump over the Jan 6 attack on the U-S Capitol and for what the senator describes as Trump’s baseless claims about widespread voter fraud. He was also one of just 5 GOP senators vote against a party move to declare Trump’s pending Senate impeachment trial is constitutional.
Scotts Bluff County Chair Kolene Woodward wrote in an open letter to Sasse that the House impeachment was done with “no investigation, evidence, or due process” and that his support for “such a mock judicial proceeding reminiscent of Joseph Stalin is reprehensible.”
Woodward also laments that Nebraska law doesn’t allow for Sasse to be recalled, saying the senator was elected to represent the people of Nebraska who overwhelmingly voted for Trump and that his actions are “a selfish, political ploy.”
Woodward told the Scottsbluff Star Herald that in Trump, Nebraska Republicans found a voice for their political views and someone to actually advance that voice.
The state central committee censured Sasse in 2016 for not being supportive enough of Trump, but he drew more votes than Trump last year, setting records in the primary and general elections for most votes ever by a federal office candidate.
In his video, Sasse said “…the anger in this state party has never been about me violating principle or abandoning conservative policy — the anger’s always been simply about me not bending the knee to…one guy.”
Sasse described himself as one of the most conservative members of the Senate, but that “personality cults aren’t conservative, conspiracy theories aren’t conservative, lying that an election has been stolen isn’t conservative, and acting like politics is a religion isn’t conservative.”