The polls for the 2024 Nebraska primary election have now closed.

Follow along for live updates from the Omaha World-Herald as results roll in:

Chambers, McKinney in tight North Omaha race

Nebraska’s longest-serving state senator, Ernie Chambers, could have a tough battle ahead of him in his quest to return to the Nebraska Legislature and oust incumbent Sen. Terrell McKinney.

11:40 p.m.: In one of the most closely watched Nebraska Legislature races, legendary state lawmaker Ernie Chambers and incumbent State Sen. Terrell McKinney were locked in an extremely close battle in North Omaha’s 11th District.

As the vote count stood just before midnight, Chambers was leading McKinney by just 21 votes — 1,214 to 1,193. Both regardless will be advancing to the November general election, as both had big leads over Calandra Cooper, the third candidate in the race.

The race is a generational one pitting the 86-year-old Chambers against the 33-year-old McKinney.

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Chambers has twice been term-limited out of his seat in the past two decades but is seeking to reclaim it again. He has already served longer in the Legislature than any lawmaker in history — 46 years — and even has a hearing room named after him. In most elections past, he has coasted to victory without a challenge.

Chambers had endorsed McKinney in a field of contenders in 2020 when he was not eligible to run, but now is challenging him. If Chambers wins, he has said he would not seek another term.

Bacon holds off MAGA challenger

Rep. Don Bacon fends off Trump-aligned primary challenger Dan Frei in Nebraska primary

Incumbent Rep. Don Bacon held off populist challenger Dan Frei in the Republican primary for Nebraska’s 2nd District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

11:10 p.m.: Republican Congressman Don Bacon on Tuesday held off a challenge from within his own party in Nebraska’s primary on Tuesday.

Bacon, who has represented the Omaha-based 2nd Congressional District in the House since 2017, was taking more than 60% of the vote in his race against Dan Frei, an underfunded insurgent challenger who has enjoyed the backing of many Trump Republicans. The Associated Press called the race for Bacon just before 9 p.m.

Some Republicans have seen Bacon as not supportive enough of Donald Trump. But embracing the controversial former president could prove challenging for him in November in a swing district that is often closely contested between Republicans and Democrats.

Bacon is now set for a rematch with State Sen. Tony Vargas, a Democrat who ran unopposed in his party’s primary Tuesday.

Bacon beat Vargas by a 51%-49% margin in 2022, and he won his previous races by similarly thin margins. In a presidential election year where turnout figures to be high, Democrats see an opportunity in November.

Trump in 2022 called for Republicans in the Omaha area to launch a challenge against Bacon. He had criticized Bacon for supporting President Joe Biden’s infrastructure bill, which Bacon said had strong support among his constituents.

Bacon had also angered some Trump supporters for criticizing the president’s inaction after a pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol in an effort to stop the electoral vote count on Jan. 6, 2021.

With Trump loyalists largely having taken over the state and local Republican party organizations, Frei had received the endorsement of the State GOP and both Douglas and Sarpy County GOP organizations, despite Bacon’s status as a four-term incumbent Republican.

But Bacon has enjoyed the power of incumbency, including the endorsement of most prominent Republicans in the state and a big advantage in fundraising.

Frei similarly in 2014 challenged Republican incumbent Lee Terry Jr. After Terry narrowling beat Frei by 3,000 votes in the primary, he went on to lose the general election in November to Democrat Brad Ashford.

Both 1st District U.S. Rep. Mike Flood and 3rd District Rep. Adrian Smith also faced challengers within their party but won comfortably Tuesday. Flood faces a challenge in November from Democrat Carol Blood, a former Nebraska state senator from Bellevue. 

And Nebraska’s incumbent Republican U.S. Senators were also comfortably won their primary races despite facing inter-party challengers.

U.S. Sen. Deb Fischer was taking almost 80% of the vote against Arron Kowalski. Meanwhile, Pete Ricketts was also running up close to 80% of the vote against challengers John Glen Weaver and Mac Stevens. 

Both Nebraska Senate seats are on the ballot this year as Ricketts — appointed to the seat by Gov. Jim Pillen — is running to fill the unexpired term of former senator Ben Sasse. 

Ricketts faces a challenge in November from Democrat Preston Love Jr., who was unopposed in his primary on Tuesday.

State board of education features close contests

Nebraska State Board of Education races become clearer after primary votes

Primary voters narrowed the field Tuesday in two races for the Nebraska State Board of Education, although the final outcome hasn’t entirely been determined.

 11:05 p.m.: The State Board of Education in recent years has provided some hotly contested races, and Tuesday proved no exception.

In Subdistrict 4, which represents eastern Douglas County, Democrat Liz Renner had nearly 50% of the vote, with nonpartisan LeDonna White Griffin and Republican Stacy Matula in a close race for second. 

In Subdistrict 2, made up of several counties in southeast Nebraska, including Sarpy, Republican Linda Vermooten was receiving nearly 45% of the vote in a race against two Democrats. Maggie Douglas was second with 36% and Karen Morgan third at almost 20%.

The races are officially nonpartisan. The top two finishers in each race will face off in November.

All regents up for election advance to November

11:00 p.m.: The four incumbents running for the University of Nebraska’s Board of Regents all were leading their races Tuesday, in most cases comfortably.

In Omaha’s District 4, Elizabeth O’Connor was taking almost two-thirds of the vote against challenger Jim Rogers.

In District 8, another Omaha-area district, Barbara Weitz was likewise garnering nearly two-thirds against Zachary Mellender.

In District 5, incumbent Rob Schafer of Beatrice faced two challengers but was pulling in over 50% of the vote.

Regent Jim Scheer of Norfolk was running unopposed.

The top two finishers in each district advance to run in November.

Bellevue sales tax increase sinks

10:38 p.m.: Voters in Bellevue soundly rejected a proposed half-cent sales tax. 

In incomplete returns, more than 60% of voters gave a thumbs down to the tax that would be earmarked for public infrastructure projects, including possibly helping to pay for a planned regional water park. The Bellevue tax would go to two cents on each $1 purchase, in line with Papillion, Gretna and LaVista.

Two other Legislature incumbents in close races

10:19 p.m.: State Sen. Terrell McKinney was not the only incumbent state lawmaker in a tight race on Tuesday.

Robert Dover of Norfolk, appointed to the District 19 seat by then-Gov. Pete Ricketts, was narrowly behind Jeanne Reigle in District 19, though still likely to advance to the November election in a three-candidate race.

In Grand Island-area District 35, incumbent Sen. Ray Aquilar was narrowly behind Dan Quick in a two-candidate race. Both would be expected to continue the close battle into November.

Omaha city charter changes passing, but two are close

Bellevue sales tax increase trailing, four of six Omaha charter amendments cruising

The Bellevue City Council had put the half-cent sales tax increase on the ballot to raise money for public infrastructure projects.

It appears all six Omaha city charter amendments were on their way to passage on Tuesday night, though a couple are close calls.

Amendment 1, a technical cleanup that would remove a section of the charter that is superseded by state law, was narrowly passing in incomplete results.

Amendment 6, which would raise the minimum purchase or contract amount that needs city approval from $20,000 to $50,000, was also only slightly ahead.

The other four amendments were comfortably on their way to passage.

Nebraska partisans appear ready for Biden vs. Trump II

Primary results suggest Nebraska partisans ready for Joe Biden vs. Donald Trump rematch

If Tuesday’s primary results are any indication, Nebraskans appear ready for another Joe Biden vs. Donald Trump race for the White House.

Nebraskans appear ready for another Joe Biden vs. Donald Trump race for the White House — though whether the current president or former one faces an enthusiasm gap within his party remains to be seen.

Biden, the Democratic incumbent who essentially has been unopposed in his bid for his party’s renomination, was receiving more than 90% of Tuesday’s Nebraska primary vote. He faced nominal opposition from Minnesota Congressman Dean Phillips.

Trump had to vanquish a number of challengers earlier this year on his way to becoming the Republicans’ presumptive nominee for the third straight election. But he still had competition on the ballot in Nebraska Tuesday, particularly from former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley.

In incomplete returns, Trump was receiving more than 75% of the vote. The vast majority of the rest were going to Haley, with Michigan businessman Perry Johnson receiving a smattering of votes.

Now it’s time for results

8 p.m.: Polls have closed and election workers have begun the work of tallying the results of Nebraska’s primary election.

Stay tuned to for the Nebraska primary election results

'I like knowing I can make a change': Nebraskans turn out to vote on primary election day

Tick, tick, tick . . .

7:55 p.m.: Polls set to close in five minutes. First Nebraska results expected soon after.

A first-time voter in Elkhorn 

5:55 p.m.: Sean Stara’s dad encouraged the 19-year-old Elkhorn youth to cast his first ballot in Tuesday’s primary.

A registered non-partisan, he studied the candidates’ positions and wrote notes in an app on his cell phone before he showed up to his polling place at The Relevant Center, on West Maple Road.

“I like knowing I can make something of a change,” Stara said. 

Meanwhile, some populist insurgents may be toppling GOP traditionalists at the state and county level in Nebraska, but Tom Mann, 72, likes the establishment Republicans he’s gotten to know – often personally.

That’s why he cast ballots for incumbent Sen. Pete Ricketts and Rep. Don Bacon over their opponents when he voted at St. Andrews United Methodist Church in northwest Omaha Tuesday.

He said he got to know Ricketts personally a few years ago, when both their mothers were in the same Omaha nursing home.

“I wanted to make sure Pete Ricketts stays in,” Mann said.

He hasn’t met Bacon, but he said he’s impressed with the four-term incumbent’s military service. Bacon served 29 years in the Air Force, retiring as a brigadier general in 2014.

“I think we need someone in office who knows what it means to commit troops overseas,” Mann said. “He knows the cost. It’s not just another Benghazi.” – Steve Liewer

A petition at the May primary

5:31 p.m.: At the Washington Elementary School polling place in Omaha’s Dundee-Memorial Park neighborhood, poll workers as of 3:30 p.m. said every voter who had come in had a proper identification card and was able to vote.

Dan Gilbert, a Democrat who came to cast his ballot, said he was “delighted” to hear the new law had not been a deterrent. He called voter ID laws a product of a “made-up problem.” 

“There’s no evidence of voter fraud in America at any scale at all,” he said. “And every time supporters of voter ID are challenged on that, they have no answer.” 

Outside the polling place and the street, retired Westside school teacher and neighborhood resident Dave Richardson was collecting petition signatures in the drive to repeal the $10 million appropriation the Legislature made for private school scholarships. He had collected 18 signatures as of 4 p.m., saying few he’d asked had declined to sign. 

He found an avid supporter in Kim Armstrong. She noted she had collected 15 signatures herself last year in the successful petition drive challenging another effort by state lawmakers to provide $25 million toward such scholarships. 

“So I’m so mad that they did that again,” she said. – Henry Cordes

Voting at Masonic Prince Hall Grand Lodge

5:30 p.m.: At Masonic Prince Hall Grand Lodge, 2418 Ames Avenue in Omaha, 42 had voted by the early evening. – Chris Machian

One voter says voter ID is ‘dumbest law ever’  

Primary Election, Sons of Italy signs

Campaign signs for the May 14, 2024 primary election stand outside the polling place at the Sons of Italy event hall south of downtown Omaha at 1238 S. 10th St.

Dan Crisler

5:02 p.m.: So far, there appear to few, if any, problems on Nebraska’s new voter ID law.

At polling places in Sons of Italy, located south of downtown Omaha at 1238 S. 10th St., and Masonic Prince Hall Grand Lodge at 24th Street and Ames Avenue in North Omaha, inspectors reported registered voters have complied with the new requirement that they show state-issued identification.

That doesn’t mean every voter is happy about the new requirement.

“It’s really the dumbest thing ever,” said Joe Monestero, a 74-year-old registered Democrat who considers himself an independent.

Monestero, who voted at the Sons of Italy event hall, said he had no problem presenting his driver’s license to poll workers. But he believes the new law is a solution to a problem that doesn’t exist.

“Some people had a mother who was 70-80 years old, didn’t drive a car, was a housewife (or) whatever. She may have never had an ID. She certainly didn’t have a state ID,” Monestero said. “And yet, she could go to her bank without an ID and sign her name. And they took her name by what she said she was.

“Now you come up here and they’re like, ‘Well, we’ve got to know it’s really you,’” he added. “It’s a stupid law.”

Monestero and Peter Olson, a 29-year-old Democrat, said they’ve always voted. This primary season, they both were motivated by specific down-ballot races.

Olson voted for Yanira Garcia, who is competing for a two-year term representing District 3 on the Regional Metropolitan Transit Board. District 3 covers a southern portion of downtown Omaha as well as South Omaha. Other candidates for that position include John Sullivan and Andrew Adams.

As he walked back to his bicycle outside the Sons of Italy hall, Olson described himself an avid user of public transportation.

“I’m hoping whoever we elect to that position is able to help build up the biking and transit infrastructure in the city,” he said.

Monestero said proposed changes to the city’s Home Rule Charter caught his eye. He voted against a proposed change to increase the minimum monetary threshold on contracts requiring City Council action from $20,000 to $50,000.

“It’s become too easy to spend money and just not worry about it,” he said. “That’s not the way most of us have to live.”

More than 65 people voted at the Sons of Italy polling place, which covers precinct 03-10, by 3:10 p.m. Tuesday.  A precinct inspector said she was told that number was higher than other polling places have recorded, although it’s down from previous primary election cycles.

Turnout was light at the Masonic Prince Hall Grand Lodge, which served as the polling place for precinct 02-06. A precinct inspector said just 20 people had come to the lodge to vote by 1:30 p.m. – Dan Crisler

A vote for Nikki Haley

4:58 p.m.: Ally Morrill rode out the Arbor Day tornado April 26 on the bottom floor of her Ramblewood home, protecting her youngest son, a toddler.

The storm vented its worst fury a few blocks away.

“Our windows broke. Everything in our backyard was gone,” said Morrill, 36, of Elkhorn. “At least we could still live in our house. Now we’ve got a new roof.”

The mother of four cares about education, and she cares about setting an example for her kids. Those were two reasons Morrill, a registered nonpartisan, turned out to vote mid-morning Tuesday at The Relevant Center, just across West Maple Road from Ramblewood.

She was most enthusiastic about voting for Bill McAllister in the District 3 race for the State Board of Education.

“I feel like he’s more leaning toward being inclusive of all students,” Morrill said.

Plus, Gina Bruner of Elkhorn cast a Republican ballot in Tuesday’s primary. She cast her ballot for former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley — even though former President Donald Trump is the last remaining candidate, and the presumptive nominee.

“I know she dropped out, but I still voted for her,” Bruner said. “I’m not big on Trump. I don’t like some of the things he’s done.” – Steve Liewer

Midtown electricity glitch, Skutt chalk drawing

4:48 p.m.: Voting at polling places throughout Douglas County was light through the first half of primary day, Election Commissioner Brian Kruse said.

He expected it to pick up later in the day.

By mid-afternoon, Kruse said the election appeared to be going smoothly, with few hiccups.

Two polling places lost electricity from about 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., but Kruse said the power outages did not affect voting. They happened at St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church, on 60th Street north of Center Street, and Lifegate Church, 55th and Leavenworth Streets.

“We called our rep at OPPD immediately, and OPPD was on it right away,” Kruse said.

Lifegate had plenty of natural light, he said.

The polling place at St. Matthew was in a basement social hall. People from the church loaned poll workers flashlights. Poll workers also used their phone flashlights. And the election commission sent four battery powered lanterns so people could see to vote until the lights came back on.

Kruse said OPPD told him the outage happened because a private contractor had cut a power line.

Social media was abuzz Tuesday with reports of pro-life messages drawn in chalk near a polling place at Skutt High School.

The messages didn’t violate rules against electioneering at polling places because abortion was not an issue on the ballot Tuesday, Kruse said.

“If there should happen to be ballot initiatives on that issue in the fall, that (the chalked messages) would be an issue,” Kruse said.

He said there had been very few calls by mid-afternoon to the election commission’s call center for resolving problems.

By 11:30 a.m., only person had needed to fill out a provisional ballot because they lacked proper ID. The voter had an out-of-state driver’s license and will have an opportunity to show another form of ID that’s acceptable under Nebraska’s new voter ID law. – Christopher Burbach

A tornado relief site becomes a polling place

Primary election, Relevant Center

Just weeks after serving as a tornado relief site The Relevant Center at West Maple Road and Elkhorn Drive served as a polling place for the primary election on May 14, 2024 

Luna Stephens

2:56 p.m.: In the same space that not long ago was stockpiled with supplies for tornado victims, some Elkhorn voters were casting their ballots on Tuesday.

Poll workers at The Relevant Center located at West Maple Road and Elkhorn Drive said the day had started off slow, but more voters were beginning to roll in by mid-afternoon. The election inspector on site said there hadn’t been any issues with the new ID requirement so far.

Tom Lister, 71, stopped by the center to vote shortly after 2 p.m. Lister said he votes nonpartisan and is more excited for the general election in November, but felt it was important to vote in the primary too.

“It’s just part of the deal,” he said.

Lister said he felt lucky that his home in a nearby neighborhood wasn’t hit in the Arbor Day tornado that devastated parts of Elkhorn.

“It seems like people are pulling together pretty well,” he said. “As well as anyone can when you lose your house.”

Joseph Pietrocini with Relevant Community Church said the purpose of the center is to support the community, whether that’s through tornado relief or providing a place to vote.

“It’s been crazy to say the least,” Pietrocini said of the last month. “But it’s been really encouraging to see how our community has come around.” – Luna Stephens 

Motivated voters at Chalco

2:09 p.m.: Voters were few but highly motivated by mid-day Tuesday at the Papio Natural Resources District offices in Sarpy County.

State Sen. Jen Day, who is seeking re-election and her husband and campaign manager, Jon, voted about 1 p.m.

They had just left when Gary Bunjer arrived to cast his ballot in hopes of replacing Day in the Legislature with one of her two challengers.

“Of course it’s important for us,” Day said. “We’re really politically engaged. And I’m on the ballot.”

The Days, who are Democrats, were only the 32nd and 33rd people to vote at their polling place, Precinct 54. But Jon Day said that a lot more people typically vote there in the evening, after work.

Bunjer, a 73-year-old Republican, said that a lot of people say a primary doesn’t make any difference.

“But this one is a biggie for this part of the state,” Bunjer said. “I’ve been very annoyed with what Jen Day has done in the Legislature, and I’m also hoping to get Don Bacon out of there and Dan Frei in.”

Bacon is the incumbent U.S. representative from Nebraska’s 2nd Congressional District. Frei is challenging him for the Republican nomination to face likely Democratic challenger Tony Vargas in November.

Bunjer said complying with the voter ID law was not an issue for him.

“It just makes sense,” he said. “I use ID for lots of stuff.”

Jen Day said voter ID seemed to be going well Tuesday.

“People are aware,” she said, noting that in addition to all the publicity before primary day, there are signs outside some polling places detailing requirements in case some people didn’t know or forgot.

“It’s going to be an impediment for some voters which is unfortunate,” she said. “Because the goal is always to have more voters turn out.”

Day said Nebraskans decided they wanted voter ID, and that she thought the Legislature had done a good job of implementing a plan that requires ID but still makes access to a ballot available to everyone who’s qualified to vote.

Poll workers said there had been no problems so far with voter ID. Not only had there been no complaints, but several voters had thanked them for asking for ID. — Chris Burbach

Smooth, slow traffic in Elkhorn  

Primary Election Brookside

A sign in front of Brookside Church near 204th Street and West Maple Road reminds voters that a photo ID is required to vote at the primary election on May 14, 2024

Luna Stephens

2:25 p.m.: Poll workers said it’s been an “extremely slow” day so far at the polling site at Brookside Church near 204th Street and West Maple Road in Elkhorn. Only 20 voters had come in as of 1:30 p.m but all had remembered to bring their IDs under the new requirement, according to the election inspector on site, who declined to share his name. 

“Everything, as far as I’m concerned, has been pretty smooth,” the inspector said. – Luna Stephens

Voting ‘dirt simple’ at church in Papillion

1:46 p.m.: John Brandeau said voting was “dirt simple” at Wildewood Christian Church in Papillion.

Well, simple once he remembered his wallet.

Brandeau said he patted his pockets before heading to his polling place and thought the lump he felt was his wallet. He discovered it was headphones once he arrived at the church across the street from Papillion La Vista High School at 1255 Royal Drive.

He ran home and got his wallet and ID.

When he returned to the church, there was no line to vote, and he was in and out within minutes. Brandeau said that’s typical for his polling place.

Brandeau, 66, has never missed a primary or general election. And he’s voted just about every way possible.

He submitted absentee ballots while serving overseas during his military service. He requested a ballot in the mail when he was going to be out of town during an election. And he lived in Florida during the era of punched card ballots and the resulting “hanging chads.”

In comparison, showing an ID to vote on a paper ballot seemed easy to Brandeau. He voted, handed his ballot in and was outside enjoying the sunshine in the church’s parking lot around 12:30 p.m.

As he left, other voters arrived in the parking lot. Most were in and out of the church in about 10 minutes or less. — Emily Nitcher

School board candidate wave campaign 

Primary Election, School Board Vote

Carla Kloeckner, candidate for Papillion La Vista school board, campaigned on May 14, 2024 on primary Election Day 

Joe Dejka

1:09 p.m.: Carla Kloeckner, candidate for Papillion La Vista school board, and some supporters engage in last-minute sidewalk campaigning Tuesday afternoon at the corner of First and Washington streets in Papillion. Joining her were Jaclyn Gibbons, Melanie Haakinson and Christine Schulte.

“I have worked and volunteered, not only in our schools, but our community as a whole for the past 15 years,” Kloeckner said. “And I saw a need to bring on some fresh faces to our school board. And I hope that everything I’ve done thus far will get me the votes to get there.” – Joe Dejka

Mother, daughter, Republican, Democrat 

Primary Election Holy Name

It was a slow day for precincts 02-17 and 02-18 at Holy Name Catholic Church for the primary election on May 14, 2024. The parking lot was mostly empty at the polling place shortly after 1 p.m. Tuesday.

Dan Crisler

12:58 p.m.: It was easy to find a parking spot outside Holy Name Catholic Church.

Shortly before noon Tuesday, the church, located at 2901 Fontenelle Boulevard in North Omaha, only had about 16 to 18 voters total from precincts 02-17 and 02-18 come through its doors to cast ballots, an inspector said.

The inspector, who declined to share his name, attributed the “very light” turnout to some of the high-profile races, including the presidential primaries, having already been decided. Turnout could pick up after dinner, he said.

Natalie and Carolyn Schaal were two of the voters who cast ballots. Natalie, a 35-year-old Democrat, was motivated to cast a ballot for President Joe Biden although she’s not his biggest fan, particularly of his handling of the Israel-Hamas war.

“He could do better. But it is what it is,” Natalie said.

Her mother, Carolyn, was motivated to cast a vote against U.S. Rep. Don Bacon in the Republican primary. She voted for challenger Dan Frei. Carolyn also voted for former President Donald Trump at the presidential level.

“Unfortunately, the two we have are not necessarily the best,” the 70-year-old Republican said. “They both have a record so you can compare and contrast and you go with what you think is best.”

Despite their different political preferences, both mother and daughter believe in voting in every election they can.

“I feel like it’s our civic duty,” Carolyn said. – Dan Crisler

Quiet as a church in Rockbrook 

Primary Election Rockbrook Church

Signs about Nebraska’s new voter ID law requirements greeted the few voters casting ballots Tuesday morning at Rockbrook United Methodist Church in Omaha.

Christopher Burbach

12:28 p.m.: Just before noon, poll workers outnumbered voters at Rockbrook United Methodist Church, 99th Avenue and West Center Road.

There were three workers and two people casting ballots. That brought the number of voters to a grand total of 59. So a little slow. 

Voter ID was working smoothly at Rockbrook, similar to how Douglas County Election Commissioner Brian Kruse said it had gone during early in-person voting at commission headquarters. By noon Tuesday, everyone voting at Rockbrook had identification, and no one had complained, poll workers said.

After casting her ballot at Rockbrook, Debbie Hinrichs said she votes in every election.

“It’s the only way you have a choice,” said Hinrichs, a 74-year-old Republican.

She said voting with an ID for the first time went well.

“I’m glad we have it,” she said of Nebraska’s voter ID law. “I know we don’t have that much of a concern in this county or state, but it addresses an issue.” – Christopher Burbach

The scene in South O 


Marty Foral is the fourth voter as of 10 a.m. at Our Lady of Guadalupe Social Hall in Omaha on Tuesday, May 14, 2024.

10:45 a.m.: Marty Foral is the fourth voter as of 10 a.m. at Our Lady of Guadalupe Social Hall. As of 10:45, at the nearby American Legion Post 331, they had eight ballots cast, plus one provisional ballot. – Chris Machian

Voter ID law kicks into gear

Photo ID sign

Voters used to seeing a “VOTE HERE” sign saw new words underneath the proclamation on Tuesday

Sam McKewon

Voter ID standards

A sign outside Lincoln’s Irving Recreation Center detailed the forms of ID that would not be acceptable for voters to identify themselves 

Sam McKewon

10:15 a.m.: You couldn’t miss the signs at Irving Recreation Center in Lincoln. VOTE HERE, said signs posted on each side of the Center’s double doors. Underneath those words, in slightly smaller type, something new: PHOTO ID REQUIRED.

Nebraska has a new voter ID law, and this primary election is the first application of the process. You can read more about the law here.

The state also posted, on the door of Irving Recreation Center, identifications that wouldn’t work – including out-of-state university IDs. So if you’re a Nebraska resident who goes to Iowa, that gold-and-black ID won’t cut it on Primary Day.

Timothy Titus, 81, of Papillion said he’s glad Nebraska is checking voter IDs.

“I have a military ID, and I use it all the time,” said Titus, who voted at the Sarpy County Courthouse. “It doesn’t bother me a bit. I think it’s a great thing that they finally did that. It’s always bothered me to come and vote and just sign my name. Nobody’d know who I was. “

Margaret Olson of Papillion, who voted at the courthouse, said the ID check went smoothly — she showed a driver’s license — but she said there’s not enough evidence of voter fraud to justify the checks.

“I think they fixed something that wasn’t broken,” Olson said. – Joe Dejka and Sam McKewon

U.S. Rep. Don Bacon casts his vote


Rep. Don Bacon votes at the Sarpy County Sheriff Administration Building in Papillion on Tuesday, May 14, 2024.

8 a.m.: At the Sarpy County Sheriff Administration Building in Papillion, U.S. Rep. Don Bacon cast his primary vote Tuesday morning.

Bacon faces Dan Frei in the contest for the 2nd Congressional District, which includes Douglas County, Saunders County and part of Sarpy County. 

Here’s how The World-Herald previewed the race: “Frei is the underfunded insurgent mounting a populist challenge to an incumbent congressman who is backed by the Republican establishment. And once again, the fierce intra-party fight has implications for whether Republicans will keep their hold on an important congressional seat in a swing district.”

2nd Congressional District challenger Dan Frei votes in Omaha


Dan Frei votes in the Nebraska primary election at the Harvey Oaks Elementary School polling location in Omaha on Tuesday, May 14, 2024.

8 a.m.: Like Bacon, Dan Frei voted as soon as the polls opened. 

Frei, who voted at the Harvey Oaks Elementary School polling location in Omaha, has the endorsements of populist-dominated Douglas, Sarpy, Saunders, and state GOP committees.

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