Dave Heineman

From Ballotpedia
Revision as of 11:27, 27 May 2013 by Maresa Strano (Talk | contribs)

Jump to: navigation, search
David Heineman
Dave Heineman official photo.jpg
Governor of Nebraska
In office
January 20, 2005 - Present
Term ends
Years in position 10
PredecessorMike Johanns (R)
Base salary$105,000
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 2, 2010
First electedNovember 2006
Campaign $$6,725,213
Term limitsTwo consecutive terms
Prior offices
Lieutenant Governor of Nebraska
Nebraska Treasurer
Bachelor'sUnited States Military Academy at West Point (1970)
Military service
Service/branchUnited States Army
Date of birthMay 12, 1948
Place of birthFalls City, Nebraska
Office website
Personal website
Campaign website
David Eugene "Dave" Heineman (born May 12, 1948, in Falls City, Nebraska) is the current Republican Governor of Nebraska. He originally assumed the role when Mike Johanns was appointed United States Secretary of Agriculture in President George W. Bush's Cabinet on January 20, 2005. Heineman was officially elected to the position in November 2006 and re-elected in the 2010 midterms. He is term limited from running for a third term as governor in the 2014 elections.


After graduating from West Point, Heineman served for five years with the United States Army, leaving with the rank of captain. He graduated from the Army Ranger training program during his years of service.


  • Bachelor's degree in economics - United States Military Academy at West Point (1970)

Political career

Governor of Nebraska (2005 - Present)

Heineman originally assumed the governorship upon Mike Johanns' appointment as United States Secretary of Agriculture in January 20, 2005. He was officially elected to the position in November 2006 and re-elected in the 2010 midterms.


Tax reform

In January 2013, Heineman announced he would seek to eliminate the state income tax and replace it by eliminating many sales tax exemptions. He said he believes eliminating the income tax would make the state a magnet for jobs.[1] However, on February 16, 2013, he asked the Nebraska State Senate to kill two tax reform bills, which had been introduced by Senators Beau McCoy and Brad Ashford on the governor's behalf and referred to the Revenue Committee. LB 405 would repeal the state personal and corporate income taxes while also eliminating $2.4 billion worth of sales tax exemptions.[2] The more limited LB 406 would repeal just the corporate income tax and eliminate $400 million worth of sales tax exemptions while also exempting up to $12,000 of retirement income from the income tax.[3] The Platte Institute for Economic Research, a pro-market think tank, supported eliminating both the personal and corporate income taxes.[4][5] After his proposal met with significant opposition from businesses and others who would have been affected by eliminating the sales tax exemptions, Heineman said he wanted the bills pulled so that Revenue Committee Chairman Galen Hadley could develop a more comprehensive tax reform plan.[6][7]

Tax cut

In Dec. 2006, Heineman presented the Nebraska State Legislature with a middle class tax cut which promised $1 billion of tax relief over the subsequent four years.[8] After finagling with state legislators, he signed LB 367, the largest tax relief bill in the state's history. The bill provided $425 million in tax relief over a two year period. Heineman also pushed for legislation that would make the state's Department of Health and Human Services more accountable to citizens.


In a state where agricultural issues are important, Heineman has made them a top priority. The governor helped to negotiate trade deals with the Republic of China and Cuba for the exportation of wheat, soybeans, and other commodities. He has also been a proponent of increased production of ethanol.

The Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare")

Nebraska Watchdog reported on Heineman's feud with the Nebraska Democratic Party regarding his opposition to national health care and his push to get top educators in the state to fight the Obama health care plan. [9]

Judicial appointments

As governor, Heineman is responsible for appointing judges to Nebraska state courts. In Nebraska, the governor makes a judicial appointment after candidates are recommended by a judicial nominating commission. After the governor appoints a judge, she or he must run for retention in the next general election more than three years after taking office. For an up-to-date list of all of Heineman's appointees, see Judgepedia's page on his appointments.

2014 Gubernatorial Election

See also: Nebraska gubernatorial and lieutenant gubernatorial election, 2014

Heineman is barred by term limits from seeking a third term as governor in 2014.

He had intended to enthusiastically back former Lieutenant Governor Rick Sheehy, with whom he shared a winning ticket in both the 2006 and 2010 elections, as his successor until Sheehy abruptly resigned from office in Feb. 2013. His stemmed from an Omaha World-Herald expose that showed had made roughly 2,300 phone calls, many late at night, to women other than his wife over the past four years on his state-issued mobile phone.[10] "I had trusted him and that trust was broken," Gov. Dave Heinman explained at a Feb. 2 press conference where he made the shocking announcement.[11][12] Sheehy announced his candidacy for governor back in July 2011, and [13] had been considered the front-runner until the scandal broke, causing a "deeply disappointed" Heineman to withdraw his support for Sheehy's gubernatorial campaign, which shut down soon thereafter.[14][15][16]


Lieutenant Governor resignation

Lieutenant Governor Rick Sheehy resigned on February 2, 2013 amid revelations he had abused his state-issued cell phone privileges over the course of four years. As governor, Heineman was authorized to appoint an interim lieutenant governor to serve out the remaining two years of Sheehy’s term. Heineman appointed Lavon Heidemann (R) to fill the vacancy. Heidemann was sworn in on February 13, 2013.[17] He will serve in this role until a successor can be elected in 2014.[18]

Budget plan

In Nov. 2009, while Nebraska faced "a [budget] shortfall of $334 million" caused largely by shrinking sales tax receipts, Heineman introduced a plan to help balance it that included a number of cost saving measures such as "agency savings, transfers from the general fund" [19] and a 2.5% across-the-board reduction to most state agencies in the 2009 fiscal year and a 5% reduction in fiscal year 2010-2011, cuts totaling $80 million.

Heineman's budget proposal would also take another $154 million from K-12 education, Medicaid, the state prison system and the State Patrol. School budgets would not be cut, the planned increases would simply be frozen, Heineman assured. Unlike neighboring Iowa's Governor Chet Culver, Heineman's proposal did not include a personal salary cut. Heineman said he would oppose any attempt to increase income or sales taxes and expressed his opposition to dipping any further into the state’s cash reserve fund.[20]

Lieutenant Governor of Nebraska (2001 - 2005)

Heineman was appointed as Lieutenant Governor of Nebraska on October 1, 2001, after David I. Maurstad resigned in order to serve as director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Region VIII. He was elected to his first full term the following year.

Nebraska Treasurer (1994 - 2001)

Heineman was first elected to the office of treasurer in 1994 and won re-election to the office four years later.

Fremont City Council (1990-1994)

Heineman was first elected to serve the general public of Nebraska in 1990 as a member of the Fremont City Council. He remained there until 1994 when he successfully campaigned to be the state's treasurer.



See also: United States Senate elections in Nebraska, 2014 and Nebraska gubernatorial election, 2014

Heinemann is barred by term-limits from seeking re-election as governor. His popularity and imminent availability placed Heinemann at the top of the list of 2014 potential candidates for the open U.S. Senate seat being vacated by GOP freshman Sen. - and Heinemann's predecessor as governor - Mike Johanns.[21][22] Heinemann announced on May 25, 2013 that he had decided against entering the Senate race.[23]


See also: Nebraska gubernatorial election, 2010

Heineman defeated challenger Mike Meister in the 2010 gubernatorial race. His margin of victory was 49 points - the largest gubernatorial win of 2010.[24]

  • General Election - 2010 Governor Race
Governor of Nebraska, 2010
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Mike Meister 26.1% 127,343
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngDave Heineman Incumbent 73.9% 360,645
Total Votes 487,988


2006 Race for Governor - Republican Primary [25]
Candidates Percentage
Green check mark.jpg Dave Heineman (R) 50.3%
Tom Osborne (R) 44.4%
Dave Nabity (R) 5.3%
Total votes 274,975
2006 Race for Governor - General Election [26]
Candidates Percentage
Green check mark.jpg Dave Heineman (R) 73.4%
David Hahn (D) 24.5%
Barry Richards (Nebraska) 1.5%
Mort Sullivan (By Petition) 0.6%
Total votes 593,357

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Heineman is available dating back to 2006. Based on available campaign finance records, Heineman raised a total of $6,725,213 during that time period. This information was last updated on May 23, 2013.[27]

Dave Heineman's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 NE Governor/Lt. Governor Not up for election $140,413
2010 NE Governor/Lt. Governor Won $2,683,538
2008 NE Governor/Lt. Governor Not up for election $148,207
2006 NE Governor/Lt. Governor Won $3,753,055
Grand Total Raised $6,725,213


Ballotpedia collects information on campaign donors for each year in which a candidate or incumbent is running for election. The following table offers a breakdown of Dave Heineman and Rick Sheehy's donors each year.[28] Click [show] for more information.


Heineman currently resides in Freemont, Nebraska with his wife, Sally Ganem, and their son, Sam. He is a practicing Methodist.

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term "Dave + Heineman + Nebraska + Governor"

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

  • Loading...

Contact info

Office of the Governor
Post Office Box 94848
Lincoln, NE 68509-4848

Phone: 402-471-2244
Fax: 402-471-6031

See also

External links

Suggest a link


  1. Wall Street Journal, "The State Tax Reformers," January 29, 2013
  2. Text of LB405
  3. Text of LB 406
  4. Patrick Lincoln Gerhart, Platte Institute for Economic Research, "The Benefits of Eliminating the Income Tax," February 6, 2013
  5. Patrick Lincoln Gerhart, Platte Institute for Economic Research, "Tax Proposal Review Part Two: Ending the Corporate Income Tax," February 13, 2013
  6. JoAnne Young, Lincoln Journal Star, "Heineman to Legislature: Kill tax bills," February 16, 2013
  7. Grant Schulte, Associated Press, "Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman asks panel to kill both of his tax bills, start new tax discussion," February 16, 2013
  8. Fremont Tribune "Heineman outlines his tax cuts proposals" 29 Dec. 2006
  9. Nebraska Watchdog
  10. The Wall Street Journal, "Nebraska Lieutenant Governor Resigns," February 2, 2013
  11. World Herald-Bureau, "Mike Flood launches bid for governor's office in 2014," November 13, 2012
  12. World Herald-Bureau, "Mike Flood launches bid for governor's office in 2014," November 13, 2012
  13. Journal Star, "Sheehy says he will run for Nebraska governor in 2014," July 15, 2011
  14. ‘’The Wall Street Journal, “Nebraska lt. governor resigns,” February 2, 2013
  15. ‘’Omaha World-Herald, “Sheehy’s campaign returns donations,” February 6, 2013
  16. ‘’Omaha World-Herald, “Sheehy’s campaign returns donations,” February 6, 2013
  17. Omaha.com, "Choice of Heidemann for lieutenant governor called 'great pick'," February 14, 2013
  18. The World Herald-Bureau, "Lt. Gov. Rick Sheehy issues resignation," February 2, 2013
  19. Journal Star "Gov. Dave Heineman: Budget proposal is about reducing spending" 2 Nov. 2009
  20. Governor Lays Out Budget Cuts; His Salary Safe, Nebraska Watchdog, November 2, 2009
  21. Roll Call, "Heineman, Fortenberry Considering Senate Run in Nebraska, "February 18, 2013
  22. Omaha World-Herald, "Dave Heineman weighs Senate bid," February 18, 2013
  23. 630WPRO.com, "Nebraska Governor Takes a Pass on Senate Bid," May 27, 2013
  24. Nebraska Secretary of State, "Official Report of the State Board of Canvassers of the State of Nebraska", accessed December 21, 2010
  25. Nebraska Secretary of State - 2006 Republican Primary Election Results
  26. Nebraska Secretary of State - 2006 General Election Results
  27. Follow the Money, "Career fundraising for Dave Heineman," accessed May 23, 2013
  28. Follow the Money.org, "Home," accessed February 17, 2015

Political offices
Preceded by
Dawn E. Rockey
Nebraska Treasurer
Succeeded by
Lorelee Hunt Byrd
Preceded by
David I. Maurstad
Lieutenant Governor of Nebraska
Succeeded by
Rick Sheehy (R)
Preceded by
Mike Johanns (R)
Governor of Nebraska
Succeeded by