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Gov. Pete Ricketts launched a new gubernatorial podcast on Monday that will feature occasional conversations between the governor and a variety of guests.

Sen. Deb Fischer was the first guest on the governor's podcast, which he has named "The Nebraska Way."

During a 40-minute conversation, Fischer and Ricketts talked about her work in the Senate along with issues ranging from agriculture to national defense.

Fischer told the governor she isn't optimistic about any bipartisan agreement in the divided Congress on a long-discussed infrastructure improvement program.

The podcast can be accessed at https://soundcloud.com/user-400815740.

"From craft brewers to lawmakers to sports coaches, The Nebraska Way podcast will give listeners the opportunity to hear from people who are moving our state forward about the issues that matter most to Nebraskans," the governor said.

"Whether you're a farmer ridging a field or a commuter on the way to work, podcasts have become a great tool for people with busy lives to get the information they need about the world," Taylor Gage, the governor's director of strategic communications, said.

Fischer, who is chairwoman of the Senate Armed Services Committee's subcommittee on strategic forces, told Ricketts that "my focus will be nuclear modernization" in performing that role.

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Turning to trade issues, Fischer described the proposed new USMCA trade agreement between the United States, Mexico and Canada as "a very good deal" that deserves congressional ratification.

Fischer told the governor that her appointed position as a member of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's Republican leadership team benefits the state.

"It is extremely important to have Nebraska at the table," Fischer said, and she regularly tells Senate leaders "what I heard in Nebraska" following her trips home. Recent topics have included the record flooding in March and its impact on Offutt Air Force Base, she said.

The team generally meets in McConnell's office late Monday afternoons, the senator told the governor.

Ricketts said he hopes Nebraskans will tune in to his podcast "so that they stay in the know about what is happening in the Good Life and new opportunities that are on the horizon."

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Reach the writer at 402-473-7248 or dwalton@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LJSDon.

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Political reporter

Don Walton, a Husker and Yankee fan, is a longtime Journal Star political and government reporter.

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