OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — The Republican field for Nebraska governor is beginning to fill up.
State Senator Brett Lindstrom, who represents parts of Northwest Omaha in the Unicameral, announced his run for governor on Thursday.
Lindstrom is no firebrand and may not be the most vocal senator in the Nebraska Legislature, but he’s running on his experience in Lincoln and what he’s been able to do on taxes, specifically a bill that phases out social security benefits.
He says that was just the start.
“So when we say tax reform, I mean tax reform from top to bottom,” Lindstrom said.
If Brett Lindstrom becomes governor he wants to re-evaluate everything in Nebraska's tax code.
From property taxes to income taxes, to looking into sales tax exemptions like junk food, haircuts and car repair.
He says everything is on the table.
“We’ve been putting band-aids over the tax code over the last 40 plus, 50 plus years, and it’s the restructuring and the tax reform that needs to be stripped down to its basic core and foundation and built back up. And that would include looking at those exemptions as well,“ said Lindstrom.
To accomplish this, Lindstrom, who sits on the revenue committee, wants to find ways for the state to fund more schools across Nebraska.
All to ensure property taxes don’t continue to climb and cripple families.
“And it is front and center as the number one thing that people want to see addressed in the state,” said Lindstrom.
The 40-year-old says he represents the younger generation in the state and wants to work to keep young adults here and to slow 'brain drain.'
His tactic would be to make the small business climate easier to navigate, making it possible to innovate and start your own business.
“And unleashing the entrepreneurial spirit so we had those individuals take the risks to build businesses and create those next generational opportunities,” said Lindstrom.
Lindstrom also isn’t against legalizing medical marijuana. This year, he voted for the more restrictive bill that would have legalized the drug for certain ailments.
He feels it will be legalized one way or another.
“To me, it’s inevitable just how Nebraska makes sure we protect our kids and do it in a prudent way,” said Lindstrom.
Governor Pete Ricketts is term-limited and Nebraska will be picking a new governor in 2022.
A Republican has won the race every time since 1994.
Lindstrom so far is taking on Charles Herbster and Jim Pillen, two men with agricultural backgrounds.
Lindstrom, who was born and raised in Omaha, says he knows those in the western part of the state face different challenges and he doesn’t pretend to know everything.
“People want to see authenticity and as a gubernatorial candidate to come out from Omaha and claiming to know everything that people face in the 3rd district is disingenuous, so I want to make sure I’m listening more than I’m talking,” said Lindstrom.
In other states, Republican candidates running for governor have courted the support of former President Donald Trump.
Lindstrom says while he voted for Trump and supports many of his policies, the race isn’t about Trump.
“It’s about who can do the best job for the state of Nebraska.”