1st District race, a preview

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October 15th, 2010

By Mike Tobias, NET News
Watch the full interview here

The 1st District U.S House of Representatives’ race features incumbent Republican Jeff Fortenberry running against Democrat Ivy Harper, a political newcomer. As part of our ongoing Election 2010 coverage, NET News sat down with Fortenberry and Harper to talk one-on-one about issues like health care, war and the economy. Reporter Mike Tobias also delved into the candidates’ personal backgrounds.

Jeff Fortenberry, R-NE (Photo courtesy U.S. House)

Fortenberry, a 49-year-old a former publishing executive who was first elected to Congress in 2004, talked about how his personal ideology has changed with age. “As you get older, you have more experiences,” Fortenberry said. “You deal with difficult things in public policy. You see many people in difficult hurting circumstances. And government has a clear role in providing a more just and good society, an orderly society. But it can’t ultimately do everything.” Fortenberry added, “There are various levels of structure that provide good systems, good order, including the media, including education. But it has to also start at the most intimate form of community and that’s the family. I think, as I’ve grown, I have a higher level of sensitivity to that whole aspect.”

Ivy Harper is a 58-year-old former Congressional aide and writer. She talked about what she learned from former governor and U.S. Senator Bob Kerrey, the subject of a book she authored.

Ivy Harper, D is hoping to unseat incumbent Fortenberry (Photo courtesy Harper Campaign)

“When he told me that one of the things that struck him when he entered politics… he said what he noticed was how petty politics could be and how intense people could get about what he felt were pretty minor issues,” Harper said. “He had seen some of his comrades blown up. And he said, really war, you know, that’s something to get shook about. A lot of this other stuff, we just need to put it in perspective. So that’s always stayed with me.”

NET News aired the full half-hour interview with Fortenberry and Harper Friday, Oct. 15. Watch the full interview here.

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