The tea party scored a win in Nebraska on Tuesday as university president Ben Sasse captured the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in a bitter race that highlighted the fissures within the GOP. Two women set the stage for history-making in West Virginia.
Sasse, who had the backing of outside conservative groups, Sarah Palin and Sen. Ted Cruz, grabbed 45 percent of the vote to 25 percent for Sid Dinsdale, the president of Pinnacle Bank, and 23 percent for former State Treasurer Shane Osborn.
For months, Sasse was locked in an increasingly negative race with Osborn, who had the backing of the Washington establishment and allies of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.
“Congratulations to Ben Sasse, who won a hard-fought primary by building his campaign on the simple idea that Obamacare is a disaster that needs to be repealed,” said Club for Growth President Chris Chocola in a statement.
Voters in Nebraska and West Virginia were deciding their lineups for the November elections in the latest round of spring primaries. The fall midterms will determine control of Congress for the last two years of President Barack Obama’s second term, with Republicans expected to hold the House and cautiously optimistic about winning control of the Senate.