Indicted U.S. Rep. Jeff Fortenberry’s political fortunes took a major hit Friday when two of Nebraska’s most prominent Republicans withdrew their longtime support for him and endorsed a state lawmaker who hopes to unseat the nine-term congressman in the GOP primary.
Republican Gov. Pete Ricketts and former Gov. Dave Heineman announced that they would support state Sen. Mike Flood, who is challenging Fortenberry amid concerns that the federal charges he faces could cost the GOP an otherwise safe House seat.
“Mike Flood is a strong conservative who will fight for Nebraska’s interests and push back against the Far Left in Washington,” said Governor Ricketts. “We can’t take risks with the 1st District’s representation. Mike is the clear choice to help Republicans retake the House and fire Nancy Pelosi as speaker. Republicans need to come together to back the strongest candidate, and that’s Mike.”
“Mike Flood and I worked together to pass the two largest tax relief packages in the history of the state at that time,” said Governor Heineman. “He authored the most sweeping pro-life legislation in America to protect the unborn and I signed it into law. Mike Flood is an outstanding leader and a skilled legislator. He is a fiscal conservative, a man of action, and a person of integrity. I am proud to support, endorse, and vote for Mike Flood for Congress.”
Fortenberry has pleaded not guilty to charges accusing him of making false statements to federal investigators about an illegal $30,000 campaign contribution from a foreign national and not properly disclosing it in his campaign filings.