The Daily Beast

Why Is Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts Acting Extra Crazy?

Mike Theiler/AFP via Getty

Billionaire’s scion and Nebraska governor Pete Ricketts set a high watermark for controversy during his first six years in office. There was his “crazy” refusal to lock down the state despite a surge of COVID-19 cases, the unearthed racist messages from his former campaign field director, and his maskless gabfest at a sports bar on election night 2020. (The restaurant worker who filmed the governor was fired.)

Yet in recent months the nuttiness quotient has somehow metastasized. Over the summer, the governor fueled a far-right conspiracy that claimed that some of President Biden’s conservation efforts were in fact a private land grab.

Then Ricketts dived head first into the culture wars, assailing critical race theory, the playing of the “Black national anthem” at a University of Nebraska basketball game, and other anti-racism efforts at the college.

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