Important People

Last week, Omaha Westside Superintendent Mike Lucas had a conversation leaked online by “Accuracy in Media,” a government accountability group. In it, Dr. Lucas bragged that his district had some of the “most important” people in the state. These “important people” could be fed talking points by the school district to lobby the legislature to kill bills the Omaha-based school district didn’t like.

Dr. Lucas listed off the wealthy people he deemed “important” enough to carry the district’s message. His comments hammer home something I despise about politics. Some lawmakers think the number of zeros in your net worth determines the value of your opinions. That’s malarkey. A state senator represents 40,000 people. All of them have one vote, one voice apiece. If someone calls my office for help, I’m not going to do a Google search to see if they’re “important.” Whether you’re rich or poor, republican or democrat, urban or rural – you have access to my office.

The same day Dr. Lucas’ video was released, I spent my recess day with Duane and Larry at the Broken Spoke Ranch a few miles outside Table Rock in Pawnee County. We talked about rodeos, taxes, and horses. We talked about how small farmers and ranchers can’t pass their homesteads down to the next generation. We talked for hours.

Turns out it was my most important conversation of the week, and I’m grateful for every moment of it.

As always, I welcome your input on issues important to you. Follow along on my Facebook and Twitter pages, both entitled “Senator Julie Slama” for more updates, or contact me directly at Senator Julie Slama, District 1 State Capitol, PO Box 94604, Lincoln NE 68509-4604; telephone: 402-471-2733; email:

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