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Title X, 02.5.2018

Sen. John Kuehn directs a question during a committee hearing on Feb. 5.

The deadline for incumbents to file for office came and went, and no name appeared on the list of candidates for the Legislature in District 38.

Sen. John Kuehn of Heartwell did not file.

His office issued a statement from Kuehn after the 5 p.m. deadline, saying it had been an honor to serve his constituents, but it was time for him to return home to his work and family.

He wouldn't be seeking reelection. 

Kuehn, 43, was elected to the Legislature in 2014, and is a rancher, veterinarian and biology professor at Hastings College. He is chairman of the Legislature's Performance Audit Committee and a member of the Appropriations Committee. 

He was quoted once in a profile in the Legislature's Unicameral Update saying: If he wants to start a conversation with people seated next to him, “I tell them I’m a veterinarian.” 

If he doesn’t feel like talking, “I tell them I’m a senator.” 

He has a veterinary practice in Heartwell and a farm where he raises cattle and quarter horses. 

The Nebraska Democratic Party jumped on the announcement that Kuehn would not seek reelection, with Chairwoman Jane Kleeb saying she wished Kuehn well in his next endeavors, and that the party is already talking to several candidates to run for the seat. 

Pete Ricketts for Governor campaign manager Jessica Flanagain also quickly put rumors to rest that Kuehn would join Ricketts on the gubernatorial ticket as a candidate for lieutenant governor.

"As we announced this summer, Mike Foley will join Governor Ricketts on the ballot again as his running mate," Flanagain said. 

Reach the writer at 402-473-7228 or

On Twitter @LJSLegislature.


State government reporter

JoAnne Young covers state government, including the Legislature and state agencies, and the people they serve.

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