NEBRASKA CITY — Nebraska Republicans on Saturday celebrated the conservative achievements of President Donald Trump, ranging from tax cuts to the appointment of a long line of federal judges, leaving no doubt they've planted themselves firmly by his side.
With Trump's presidency approaching a season of uncertainty, and perhaps even peril, as special counsel Robert Mueller zeros in on his ever-widening probe of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, speaker after speaker at the GOP state convention lined up in support of the president.
Rep. Don Bacon described his 2nd District House seat as "a firewall against impeachment."
Bacon, who represents metropolitan Omaha's 2nd District, pointed to a growing economy, a reduction in unemployment, tax cuts, new investments in the military and national defense, deregulation and the president's commitment to pro-life, anti-abortion policy.
Sen. Deb Fischer praised the administration's commitments to tax reductions, "rebuilding our military" and the "generational changes in the court" represented by the president's appointment of conservative federal judges.
Sen. Ben Sasse, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, focused on the impact of the president's judicial appointments, whose influence will remain long after Trump leaves the White House.
"We have nominated and confirmed (a record number of) 21 U.S. Circuit Court nominees," Sasse noted.
"Really, really special things are happening," he said.
Rep. Adrian Smith of Gering, a member of the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee, said the next step will be to make the tax cuts permanent.
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Trump's efforts "to hold the feet (of trading partners) to the fire is very appropriate," Smith suggested, touching on a topic that has a major impact on agricultural states such as Nebraska.
Meanwhile, Gov. Pete Ricketts praised the Trump administration's working relationship with state governments, describing "a night-and-day difference" in terms of the relationship states had with the administration of President Barack Obama.
"This is an administration that cares about what we think," the governor said.
"We were consistently fighting to protect our rights" when Obama was in the White House, he said.
State Treasurer Don Stenberg, a veteran Republican candidate and officeholder who will step aside as treasurer in January, said "the Trump agenda is more conservative than any president since Ronald Reagan."
Ricketts, who is seeking a second term in a contest with Democratic nominee Bob Krist, pointed to his own conservative record during his remarks.
And that includes "making sure our tax dollars do not go to any abortion providers," the governor said to cheers from the crowd gathered in the Lied Lodge and Conference Center at picturesque Arbor Day Farm.
Rep. Jeff Fortenberry of Lincoln, the fifth member of Nebraska's all-Republican congressional delegation, was engaged in family activities and did not participate in Saturday's event.