On Friday I posted that Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE) had asked Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) to remove the Cornhusker Kickback from the health care bill. You have to wonder how much this episode had to do with that:
Nebraska Sen. Ben Nelson and his wife were leaving dinner at a new pizza joint near their home in Omaha one night last week when a patron began complaining about Nelson’s decisive vote in favor of the Senate’s health care bill.
Other customers started booing. A woman yelled, “Get him the hell out of here!” And the Nelsons and their dining companions beat a hasty retreat.
Of course Sen. Nelson’s staff denies that there was any booing and tries to give the impression that his boss is doing just fine:
Nelson spokesman Jake Thompson says the senator did not hear any booing. Thompson says all Nelson heard was someone saying, “Bad vote.” He denies rumors that Nelson was chased from the pizzeria.
Thompson says many Nebraskans have thanked Nelson for becoming the 60th vote needed last month to advance the Senate bill.
Given a recent poll that shows Nelson down by 31 points to his potential opponent in 2012, I very much doubt what the Senator’s staff is selling. Once the most popular member of the Senate, his approval rating has tanked to 42 percent (48 percent disapprove of the Sen. Nelson.
If this bill comes back to the Senate, what happens in Massachusetts may not be the only problem that Democrats face if Nelson decides that the political risk isn’t worth it.
By the way, if you ever see your representatives in public, make your differences known, but please be as respectful to them as you would be any other person.