Nebraska Democratic Sen. Ben Nelson said Wednesday during a conference call with Nebraska reporters that he intends to get rid of the aisle in the Senate that divides members by party affiliation.
“I’m going to advocate — if there truly is an interest in working together — that we get rid of the aisle on the Senate floor,” said Nelson, “We could sit not by party but by state, or by alphabet, or some other way that erases the partisan divide.”
“We could sit not by party but by state, or by alphabet, or some other way that erases the partisan divide.”
“Others will probably join in. We’ve already gone through the exercise of last night so it should not be difficult to get others to sign onto the idea,” said Nelson, “The idea would be to send a joint letter to the leaders suggesting mixed seating.”
Nelson said that he is advocating this step as a more concrete follow-up to the bipartisanship of Tuesday night’s State of the Union address, where many congressmen chose to sit with colleagues of a different party.
Although one of the Senate’s most conservative Democrats, polling indicates that Nelson may follow the course of former Arkansas Democratic Sen. Blanche Lincoln to a resounding re-election defeat.
Recent polls show that Nelson is vulnerable in his bid for re-election in 2012. A December poll conducted by Magellan Strategies shows Nelson down 14 points when matched against Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning.