Hours after Gov. Dave Heineman announced that he was appointing Patrick Shannon of Bellevue to the Legislature, Shannon withdrew his name from consideration.
Shannon, a Bellevue businessman, said in an email to the governor Friday afternoon he was withdrawing his name because his father had just had a heart attack in Oklahoma, and he needed to help care for his mother.
It also turns out that turns out that after Shannon ran for the Legislature in 2004, he was fined $16,000 for failing to report spending on an anonymous mailer that accused an opponent of domestic abuse.
Nebraska Democratic Party Executive Director Jim Rogers accused Heineman, a Republican, of having skewed priorities. “This governor’s decade-long tenure has left him out of touch with Nebraskans and believing he can act with impunity,” Rogers said. “Nebraskans need someone who cares about their issues and who will appoint responsible, ethical people to positions of power.”
A Heineman spokeswoman declined to say if the governor had known about Shannon’s campaign finance problems before announcing his appointment. “This Office is not going into details on the internal application and interviewing process for an appointed position,” said Jen Rae Wang. Wang added that Shannon had withdrawn for personal family medical issues, and “We are respecting said issues.”
Shannon was to have been sworn in on Monday. For now, the 3rd legislative district seat, representing part of Sarpy County, remains vacant. It was left open by the resignation of former Sen. Scott Price of Bellevue.