Friday Feb 03, 2023

Former Nebraska Congressman Brad Ashford optimistic after brain cancer diagnosis – North Platte Telegraph


Ashford, a Democrat, lost his reelection bid to Republican challenger Don Bacon in 2016. He ran for the seat again in 2018 but lost in the Democratic primary to challenger Kara Eastman.

After Eastman defeated Ann Ashford in the 2020 Democratic primary, Brad Ashford ultimately endorsed Bacon in the general election. Ashford, who was a registered Republican before becoming an independent and ultimately a registered Democrat, said at the time that the country needed “unifiers not dividers in Congress.”

Bacon shared a statement on his Twitter account Friday in response to Ashford’s diagnosis.

“I, along with the whole community, stand with Brad and Ann, and pray for healing and a quick recovery,” he wrote. “Brad is a great leader in the Omaha community and has made a huge impact for so many. I am grateful for our friendship.”

Ashford said despite his health challenges he is focused on continuing to spread his message of bipartisanship.

“I’m not going anywhere,” he said. “But I think you learn from things like this that we, as a group, working together, we’re so much more powerful than when we’re fighting.”

150 Notable Nebraskans

2. Standing Bear

2. Standing Bear

c. 1829-1908

Native leader

A renowned Ponca chief, Standing Bear, in 1879, became the first Native to be legally recognized as a person.

In 1877, the federal government forced the Ponca from their northeast Nebraska land to Indian Territory in what is now Oklahoma. A year later, honoring the wish of his 16-year-old son to be buried along the Niobrara River, Standing Bear led a band of tribe members back to Nebraska.

Arrested for leaving the reservation, Standing Bear stood trial at Fort Omaha, his lawyers filing a writ of habeas corpus contesting the detention. The judge ruled in favor of Standing Bear and the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the ruling.

4. George Norris

4. George W. Norris



Called “the very perfect, gentle knight of American progressive ideals” by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Norris served five terms in the U.S. House of Representatives (1903-13) and five terms in the U.S. Senate (1913-43), all save the final term as a Republican.

An Ohio native, Norris moved to Beaver City in 1885 to practice law. He established an office in McCook in 1899, practicing law before beginning his political career.

Norris promoted the unicameral Legislature in Nebraska, approved by voters in 1934, and led the creation of the Tennessee Valley Authority, and the Rural Electrification Act, both championing public power.

5. William Jennings Bryan

5. Wm. Jennings Bryan



A famed orator and leader of the populist wing of the Democratic Party, Bryan was the Democratic presidential nominee three times — in 1896, 1900 and 1908. He served two terms in Congress from Nebraska and was Secretary of State …….


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