After Lee Terry misstep, Pete Festersen reconsiders run for Congress - Omaha.com
Published Tuesday, October 8, 2013 at 12:00 am / Updated at 11:06 am
After Lee Terry misstep, Pete Festersen reconsiders run for Congress

Omaha City Councilman Pete Festersen is giving a second look at Congress in the wake of Republican U.S. Lee Terry's controversial comments over his paycheck and the federal shutdown.

Festersen opened the door Monday to reconsidering his earlier decision not to run against Terry next year.

Festersen, a Democrat, said he is being urged by many to jump into the race in the wake of Terry's verbal misstep. Last week, Terry angered many when he said he could not “handle” going without his paycheck during the federal government shutdown, despite the fact thousands of other federal workers were not being paid.

Terry apologized Sunday in one of the most unequivocal political apologies issued in a long time, saying he was “ashamed” of his comments. He said he now would not accept pay during the federal shutdown.

Festersen said if he gets into the race, it would be because of his growing frustration with gridlock in Washington, D.C., and the fact many people are urging him to run for Congress.

“I'm very frustrated with America's state of affairs, which has gotten worse the last month. My phone is ringing off the hook, but I haven't made any new determinations,” Festersen said.

In August, Festersen disappointed Democrats when he announced he would not run, after flirting with a potential bid for weeks.

At the time, Festersen cited family concerns. A father of two young girls, Festersen said he preferred to stay in Omaha rather than go to Washington.

Festersen had been considered one of the Democrats' hottest prospects to tackle Terry, an eight-term congressman.

Festersen had been heavily recruited by national Democrats, who believed that the moderate, pro-business councilman had the credentials to win in the state's only swing district.

Terry has faced tough competitors in the past several election cycles, with his most recent challenger coming within 2 percentage points of unseating Terry.

He is seen by many as being one of the most vulnerable Republicans in this election cycle. It is worth noting, however, that Terry has been seen as vulnerable for at least the past three election cycles and still has won.

Contact the writer: Robynn Tysver

robynn.tysver@owh.com    |   402-444-1309    |  

Robynn is Omaha.com's elections writer. She's covered presidential politics in Iowa's caucuses, and gubernatorial and Senate races in Nebraska.

Explosion near 29th, Woolworth damages vehicles
Omaha police arrest man, 19, accused in March shooting
Earth gets its day in the sun at Elmwood Park
Beau McCoy strikes Obama doll in TV ad; Democrats are not happy
17 senators in Nebraska Legislature hit their (term) limits
No injuries after fire at midtown's old Mercer Mansion
Financial picture improving for city-owned Mid-America Center
Police: Slaying of woman in Ralston apartment likely over drugs
It's a pursuit of pastel at Spring Lake Park's Easter egg hunt
Keystone XL pipeline backers blast 'political expediency' as foes hail ruling to delay decision
29-year-old Omahan arrested for 22nd time in Lincoln
Nebraska senators to study tax issues over break
Portion of Saddle Creek Road closed after water main break
Teenager arrested after woman's purse is snatched outside Omaha store
Police identify 21-year-old shot in ankle near 30th, W Streets
Cult murderer's death row appeal denied, but execution in limbo
Interstate construction to cause lane shifts, closings in Omaha area
Kelly: A California university president returns to her Nebraska roots on Ivy Day
Omahan charged in fatal shooting in Benson neighborhood
Friday's attendance dips at Millard West after bathroom threat
High school slam poets don't just recite verses, 'they leave their hearts beating on the stage'
Crack ring's leaders join others in prison as a result of Operation Purple Haze
Haze in area comes from Kansas, Oklahoma
Man taken into custody in domestic dispute
Omaha judge reprimanded for intervening in peer attorney's DUI case
< >
COLUMNISTS »
Dickson’s Week in Review, April 13-19
On Twitter some guy tweeted that the spring game isn’t taken as seriously as a regular-season contest. What was your first clue? When the head coach entered waving a cat aloft?
Kelly: A California university president returns to her Nebraska roots on Ivy Day
The main speaker at today's Ivy Day celebration at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is a college president who grew up roping calves and earned her Ph.D. at the prestigious Oxford University in England.
Breaking Brad: Stuck in a claw machine? You get no Easter candy
I know of one kid in Lincoln who will be receiving a lump of coal from the Easter Bunny, just as soon as he's extricated from that bowling alley claw machine.
Breaking Brad: Mountain lion season's over, but the bunny's fair game!
Thursday was the last day of a Nebraska Legislature session. Before leaving town, legislators passed a bill to hold a lottery to hunt the Easter Bunny.
Breaking Brad: At least my kid never got stuck inside a claw machine
We need a new rule in Lincoln. If your kid is discovered inside the claw machine at a bowling alley, you are forever barred from being nominated for "Mother of the Year."
Deadline Deal thumbnail
The Jaipur in Rockbrook Village
Half Off Fine Indian Cuisine & Drinks! $15 for Dinner, or $7 for Lunch
Buy Now
PHOTO GALLERIES »
< >
SPOTLIGHT »
Omaha World-Herald Contests
Enter for a chance to win great prizes.
OWH Store: Buy photos, books and articles
Buy photos, books and articles
Travel Snaps Photo
Going on Vacation? Take the Omaha World-Herald with you and you could the next Travel Snaps winner.
Click here to donate to Goodfellows
The 2011 Goodfellows fund drive provided holiday meals to nearly 5,000 families and their children, and raised more than $500,000 to help families in crisis year round.
WORLD-HERALD ALERTS »
Want to get World-Herald stories sent directly to your home or work computer? Sign up for Omaha.com's News Alerts and you will receive e-mails with the day's top stories.
Can't find what you need? Click here for site map »