Wow. This endorsement pulls no punches! Here’s why we want Scott Kleeb representing us (the western 3/4 of Nebraska) in Congress.

This is the first time the World Herald has endorsed a Democrat for this seat. And they leave no doubt about it! It is very impressive to me how they go for character and ability issues.

I. On Scott Kleeb

One candidate, Scott Kleeb, stands out as the better choice. The reason: his fundamental strength – a strength of intellect, a strength of eloquence, a strength of stability.

When pressed aggressively, Kleeb’s opponent, State Sen. Adrian Smith, falls back on sound bites and slogans. When pressed under the same conditions, Kleeb draws on different resources – mental focus, breadth of analytical ability and an unshakeable internal steadiness.

Such strength could serve Kleeb well in Congress.

Wouldn’t you just love to have someone talking about you this way? And this is only a taste of the good things they say – very accurately and appropriately – about Kleeb.

Far from being a wild-eyed liberal awkwardly out of step with his staunchly conservative district, Kleeb has spent this year advancing a practical agenda. His proposals can provide common ground across partisan and ideological lines.

Kleeb, who describes himself as a devoted Catholic, also generally adheres to conservative positions on social issues that have resonated with many 3rd District voters over the years.

Isn’t it interesting that so many “conservative Christian” voters are not really interested in what you DO, or would do, about “social issues.” What they are REALLY asking, so often, is whether you will support the Republican strangle-hold on our government at so many levels. And by the way, my answer is, “No!”

II. On Adrian Smith

But then the World Herald goes to work on Adrian Smith, who has shown us for eight years how he would function as a lawmaker, and it is not real gentle.

In the Legislature, Smith is not known as a skilled lawmaker. He is not known for an ability to build constructive coalitions for complicated legislation. He is not known as a skilled public speaker. He has no reputation for making substantive issues the subjects for his priority bills. He is not a lawmaker whom backers seek out to be the prime sponsor of major legislation.

He is not known as a leader.

That reality cannot be wished away, talked away or TV-commercialed away.

Smith, without question, is a sincere and conscientious advocate for the causes he supports – causes that in several cases receive strong endorsement by this newspaper. But in terms of qualifications, the 3rd District deserves more.

Ouch!

III. Summary

Then they summarize this way.

… what is clear is that [Kleeb] possesses an unusual and impressive combination of characteristics – a sharp mind, eloquence, a practical mindset and an obvious respect for the people and communities he hopes to represent.

See the full endorsement HERE.