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1994 Nebraska gubernatorial election

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

1994 Nebraska gubernatorial election

← 1990 November 8, 1994 1998 →
Ben Nelson official photo.jpg
No image.svg
Nominee Ben Nelson Gene Spence
Party Democratic Republican
Running mate Kim Robak Kate Witek
Popular vote 423,270 148,230
Percentage 73.0% 25.6%

Nebraska Governor Election Results by County, 1994.svg
County results
Nelson:      50–60%      60–70%      70–80%      80–90%
Spence:      50–60%

Governor before election

Ben Nelson

Elected Governor

Ben Nelson

The 1994 Nebraska gubernatorial election was held on November 8, 1994, and featured incumbent Governor Ben Nelson, a Democrat defeating Republican nominee and businessman Gene Spence with 73% of the vote to win a second term. As of 2021, this is the most recent election in which a Democrat was elected Governor of Nebraska.

Democratic primary



Democratic primary results[1]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Ben Nelson (incumbent) 101,422 88.10
Democratic Robert Franklin Winingar 6,993 6.07
Democratic Robb Nimic 6,373 5.54
Democratic Write-ins 327 0.28
Total votes 115,115 100.00

Republican primary



Republican Primary results[1]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Gene Spence 69,529 38.07
Republican Ralph Knobel 57,719 31.60
Republican Alan Jacobsen 27,374 14.99
Republican John DeCamp 24,414 13.37
Republican Mort Sullivan 3,363 1.84
Republican Write-ins 234 0.13
Total votes 182,633 100.00

General election


Though Nelson ultimately did approve of an action to prevent foster children from living with homosexuals or unmarried couples after he was re-elected, Spence hammered the governor for not supporting restrictions on foster homes.[2] Ultimately, four weeks before the elections, many prominent Republicans accused Spence of "throwing in the towel" and essentially conceding defeat to Nelson before any ballots were cast.[3] The divided Republican primary and Gene Spence's inability to unite the party following his plurality victory in the primary eventually led to Nelson's overwhelming re-election.[4]


Nebraska gubernatorial election, 1994[1]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Ben Nelson (incumbent) 423,270 73.0%
Republican Gene Spence 148,230 25.6%
Write-in Ernie Chambers 2,510 0.4%
Write-in Others 5,551 1.0%
Total votes 579,561 100.0%

As of 2021, this was the last time that a Democrat had won the governorship of Nebraska.[5]


  1. ^ a b c
  2. ^ "Nebraska Moves to Bar Homosexuals From Being Foster Parents". New York Times. 1995-01-29. Retrieved 2011-06-19.
  3. ^ Jordan, Joe (2010-06-15). "History of Omaha Congressional Race Cuts Both Ways". Archived from the original on 2011-10-09. Retrieved 2011-06-19.
  4. ^ Susan (2004-05-07). "GoBigEd". Retrieved 2011-06-19.
  5. ^ McDermott, Brandon (December 20, 2013). "Seven contenders vie for Nebraska governor's seat". KVNO News. Retrieved 2019-03-03.

This page was last edited on 31 December 2020, at 03:04
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