Patty Pansing Brooks

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Patty Pansing Brooks
Member of the Nebraska Legislature
from the 28th district
Assumed office
2015
Preceded byBill Avery
Personal details
Born (1958-09-30) September 30, 1958 (age 61)
Political partyDemocratic
ResidenceLincoln, Nebraska
OccupationAttorney

Patty Pansing Brooks (née Patty Pansing, September 30, 1958) is a politician from the state of Nebraska in the Midwestern United States. In 2014, she was elected to the Nebraska Legislature, representing a Lincoln district. Pansing Brooks is a member of the Democratic Party.

Personal life and professional career[edit]

Pansing was born on September 30, 1958, in Lincoln. Her father, Tom Pansing, was an attorney who, with her uncle Bob Guenzel, had established a law firm in Lincoln in 1948.[1][2]

Pansing graduated from Lincoln Southeast High School in 1976. She obtained a bachelor's degree in political science from Colorado College in 1980; in 1984, she obtained a J.D. from the University of Nebraska College of Law.[1][3]

In 1982, Pansing married Loel P. Brooks; the couple eventually produced three children.[1] In 1986, the two established the law firm of Brooks Pansing Brooks in Lincoln.[4]

Political career[edit]

Pansing Brooks served on a number of Lincoln community boards, and co-chaired several fundraising efforts, including the raising of $9.6 million for the renovation of Centennial Mall and $6 million for Union Plaza.[3] In 2006, she co-chaired a committee to promote voter approval of a $250 million Lincoln Public Schools bond;[5] the measure passed with 63% of the vote.[6]

2014 election[edit]

2014 primary[edit]

In June 2013, Pansing Brooks announced that she would run in the 2014 election for the Nebraska Legislature, from District 28 in south central Lincoln. The incumbent, Democrat Bill Avery, was barred by Nebraska's term-limits law from running for a third consecutive term.[3][7][8]

Pansing Brooks was one of two Democrats in the four-way nonpartisan race; the other was Jeff Keidel, a real-estate investor and property manager who raised less than $5,000 for the race. Attorney Dallas Jones, a Republican, had been active in the Young Democrats during his college years, and had remained a member of the Democratic Party until 2000; he had subsequently served as the chair of the Lancaster County Republican Party. Physician Bob Rauner was an independent, who described himself as conservative on economic matters and more liberal on social issues.[9][10][11][12]

When the May 2014 primary election was held, Pansing Brooks led the field, with 3732 of the 7870 ballots cast, or 47.4%. Jones placed second, with 2459 votes, or 31.2%. Rauner obtained 1477 votes (18.8%), and Keidel 202 (2.6%).[13]

2014 general election[edit]

As the top two vote-getters in the nonpartisan primary, Pansing Brooks and Jones moved on to the general election. Both expressed their support for the proposed expansion of Medicaid in Nebraska under the provisions of the 2010 Affordable Care Act.[14][15] Pansing Brooks declared that her priorities included "enhanced investment" in education, particularly from early childhood through high school;[14] Jones also called for more spending on education, but emphasized vocational training and the university system.[15] Both candidates expressed opposition to capital punishment.[16][17] Pansing Brooks supported a ballot proposal to increase the minimum wage in Nebraska; Jones opposed it.[18] Both candidates supported ending Nebraska's policy of denying driver's licenses to persons who were living in the United States illegally after having been brought to the country in childhood, and who were granted an exemption from deportation under the Barack Obama administration's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy; however, Jones favored repeal of a state law offering in-state college tuition to such persons, while Pansing Brooks believed that the law should be kept.[18]

Over the course of the entire legislative campaign, Pansing Brooks raised over $162,000 and spent over $173,000. Major contributors included the Nebraska State Education Association, which supplied over $15,000, and the Lincoln Education Association, which contributed $2,000; the Nebraska Association of Trial Attorneys, donating $4,000; and the Nebraska State Transportation United Transportation Union, which gave her campaign $3,000.[16][19] The Jones campaign had total receipts of over $121,000, and spent over $138,000. Major contributors included the Nebraska Bankers Association, which furnished $5,100; the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce, providing $4,250, and the Nebraska Chamber of Commerce and Industry, providing over $3,500; and the Nebraska Farm Bureau Federation, contributing $4,000.[18][20] Both candidates received contributions from the Nebraska Realtors: Pansing Brooks, a total of $3,000,[19] and Jones, a total of $3,500.[20]

When the November general election was held, Pansing Brooks received 7,481 votes, for 61.4% of the total; Jones received 4706 votes, or 38.6%.[21]

Legislative tenure[edit]

2015 session[edit]

In the 2015 session of the Legislature, Pansing Brooks was assigned to the Education Committee and the Judiciary Committee.[22]

Among the "most significant"[23] actions taken by the Legislature in its 2015 session were three bills that passed over vetoes by governor Pete Ricketts. LB268 repealed the state's death penalty; LB623 reversed the state's previous policy of denying driver's licenses to DACA beneficiaries; and LB610 increased the tax on gasoline to pay for repairs to roads and bridges.[23][24][25] Pansing Brooks voted in favor of the death-penalty repeal, and to override Ricketts's veto of the measure;[26] she voted to pass LB623, then to override the gubernatorial veto;[27] and she voted for the gas-tax increase, then to override the veto.[28]

2016 session[edit]

In its 2016 session, the Nebraska legislature passed three bills that Ricketts then vetoed. LB580 would have created an independent commission of citizens to draw new district maps following censuses; supporters described it as an attempt to de-politicize the redistricting process, while Ricketts maintained that the bill delegated the legislature's constitutional duty of redistricting to "an unelected and unaccountable board".[29][30] Pansing Brooks voted for the bill at its 29–15–5 passage.[31] Sponsor John Murante opted not to seek an override of the governor's veto.[32]

A second vetoed bill, LB935, would have changed state audit procedures. The bill passed by a margin of 37–8–4; Pansing Brooks was among those voting for it. The bill was withdrawn without an attempt to override the veto; the state auditor agreed to work with the governor on a new version for the next year's session.[29][33]

A third bill passed over Ricketts's veto. LB947 made DACA beneficiaries eligible for commercial and professional licenses in Nebraska. The bill passed the Legislature on a vote of 33–11–5; the veto override passed 31–13–5. Pansing Brooks voted for the bill's passage, and for the override of Ricketts's veto.[34][35]

The legislature failed to pass LB10, greatly desired by the Republican Party, which would have restored Nebraska to a winner-take-all scheme of allocating its electoral votes in U.S. presidential elections, rather than continuing its practice of awarding the electoral vote for each congressional district to the candidate who received the most votes in that district. Supporters were unable to break a filibuster; in the 32–17 cloture motion, Pansing Brooks was among those who voted against the bill.[36][37]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Sen. Patty Pansing Brooks—Biography". Nebraska Legislature. Retrieved May 24, 2015. Archived April 23, 2015, at Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ "About Patty". Patty Pansing Brooks for Legislature. Retrieved May 24, 2015. Archived February 16, 2015, at Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ a b c Young, Joanne. "Patty Pansing Brooks will seek District 28 legislative seat". Lincoln Journal Star. June 11, 2013. Retrieved May 24, 2015.
  4. ^ "Our Firm". Brooks Pansing Brooks, PC, LLC. Retrieved May 24, 2015.
  5. ^ Reist, Margaret. "School bond debated". Lincoln Journal Star. January 18, 2006. Retrieved May 24, 2015.
  6. ^ "Lincoln Public Schools Special Bond Election, February 14, 2006". Lancaster County Election Commissioner. Retrieved May 26, 2015. Archived August 2, 2010, at Wayback Machine.
  7. ^ "Legislative District 28 - LB703 (2011)". Nebraska Legislature. Retrieved May 24, 2015.
  8. ^ "Voter's Guide: Bill Avery, Legislature, District 28". Lincoln Journal Star. October 13, 2010. Retrieved May 26, 2015.
  9. ^ "2014 Candidate Guidebook" Archived March 3, 2015, at the Wayback Machine, pp. 15–16. Nebraska Rural Electric Association. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  10. ^ Stoddard, Martha. "Nebraska Legislature, District 28: Taxes, minimum wage, abortion split 4 candidates". Omaha World-Herald. May 3, 2014. Retrieved May 26, 2015.
  11. ^ O'Hanlon, Kevin. "Lincoln attorney Jones to run for Avery's District 28 legislative seat". Lincoln Journal Star. August 3, 2013. Retrieved May 26, 2015.
  12. ^ Young, Joanne. "Lincoln doctor to run for Legislature". Lincoln Journal Star. July 2, 2013. Retrieved May 24, 2015.
  13. ^ "Official Report of the Board of State Canvassers of the State of Nebraska: Primary Election, May 13, 2014", p. 36. Nebraska Secretary of State. Retrieved May 19, 2015.
  14. ^ a b "Patty Pansing Brooks". Lincoln Journal Star. April 29, 2014. Retrieved May 26, 2015.
  15. ^ a b Young, Joanne. "Candidate Dallas Jones would seek common ground in Legislature". Lincoln Journal Star. September 29, 2014. Retrieved May 26, 2015.
  16. ^ a b Young, Joanne. "Pansing Brooks strives for strong, safe, healthy communities". Lincoln Journal Star. October 1, 2014. Retrieved May 26, 2015.
  17. ^ "Dallas Jones". Lincoln Journal Star. October 3, 2014. Retrieved May 26, 2015.
  18. ^ a b c Stoddard, Martha. "2 attorneys vie to replace Bill Avery in Lincoln's Legislative District 28". Omaha World-Herald. October 21, 2014. Retrieved May 26, 2015.
  19. ^ a b "Pansing Brooks for Legislature". Nebraska Accountability and Disclosure Commission. Retrieved May 26, 2015. See "Financial Summary" tab for overall numbers; "Schedule A" for contributions by individuals; "Schedule B" for contributions by businesses and organizations.
  20. ^ a b "Dallas Jones for Legislature". Nebraska Accountability and Disclosure Commission. Retrieved May 26, 2015. See "Financial Summary" tab for overall numbers; "Schedule A" for contributions by individuals; "Schedule B" for contributions by businesses and organizations.
  21. ^ "Official Report of the Board of State Canvassers of the State of Nebraska: General Election, November 4, 2014", p. 21. Nebraska Secretary of State. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  22. ^ "2015 Legislative Committees". Nebraska Legislature. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  23. ^ a b Knapp, Fred. "2015 Legislature Leaves Its Mark On Nebraska". NET (Nebraska public radio and television). June 3, 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  24. ^ Walton, Don. "Senators override Ricketts' veto of Dreamers licenses". Lincoln Journal Star. May 28, 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  25. ^ Pluhacek, Zach. "Gas tax hike gets Nebraska lawmakers' OK, governor's veto". Lincoln Journal Star. May 7, 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  26. ^ "Legislative Journal, One Hundred Fourth Legislature, First Session". Nebraska Legislature. Vote on final reading of LB268 is at pp. 1738–39; override of veto is at pp. 1896–98.
  27. ^ "Legislative Journal, One Hundred Fourth Legislature, First Session". Nebraska Legislature. Vote on final reading of LB623 is at pp. 1791–92; override of veto is at pp. 1930–32.
  28. ^ "Legislative Journal, One Hundred Fourth Legislature, First Session". Nebraska Legislature. Vote on final reading of LB610 is at p. 1500; override of veto is at p. 1623.
  29. ^ a b Matheny, Ryan. "Nebraska legislators wrap up 2016 session". KMA. April 25, 2016. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  30. ^ Nohr, Emily. "'Unconstitutional, unelected and unaccountable': Ricketts vetoes bill to revamp how political maps are drawn". Omaha World-Herald. April 18, 2016. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  31. ^ "Legislative Journal: Carryover Legislation". Archived April 7, 2016, at the Wayback Machine p. 1622. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  32. ^ "Independent redistricting commission vetoed, no override attempt offered". Unicameral Update. April 19, 2016. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  33. ^ "Legislative Journal: Carryover Legislation". Archived April 7, 2016, at the Wayback Machine pp. 1579–80. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  34. ^ Duggan, Joe. "Legislature to vote on overriding veto on bill that would allow work licenses for those brought to U.S. illegally as kids". Omaha World-Herald. April 19, 2016. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  35. ^ "Legislative Journal: Carryover Legislation". Archived April 7, 2016, at the Wayback Machine Passage of LB947 is on p. 1614; the veto override is on pp. 1637–38. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  36. ^ Stoddard, Martha. "Bill to return Nebraska to winner-take-all Electoral College method comes up short". Omaha World-Herald. April 13, 2016. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  37. ^ "Legislative Journal: Carryover Legislation". Archived April 7, 2016, at the Wayback Machine p. 1591. Retrieved April 29, 2016.

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