Hardin to announce a run for District 48 Senator


Link to Star-Herald

By  Christopher Borro

Conservative businessman Brian Hardin met with the Star-Herald on Friday to talk about announcing his run for District 48 of the Nebraska State Legislature. The Gering resident will target the seat currently held by Sen. John Stinner, who is term-limited.


Hardin said it was that factor, along with meetings with various local Republican representatives, which made him decide to run for office.


“Through the process of meeting different people, asking questions and learning about it, I thought ‘Well maybe there’s something I can bring to this,” he said.


Two of the main facets of his campaign are a focus on job creation and a goal of residential retention. Both of these aspects would make Nebraska a more ideal place to live and would drive in people from nearby states.

“At the end of the day,” Hardin said, “we need to create an environment that not only competes with South Dakota, Colorado (and) Wyoming, we have to beat them.”


Hardin described the agricultural industry as the ‘engine’ which drives the state. The businesses that pop up in the area do so because of the draw of agriculture. The majority of the state’s economy is based on agricultural goods, he said.

However, the eastern side of Nebraska is still culturally and economically distinct from the western half.


The current jobs in the area aren’t enough to attract and keep young families. Creating financial incentives to have businesses move to the Panhandle would fix that. Hardin suggested insurance carriers as one particular market to target.

“We may have a hard time getting them, in terms of an HQ, here in this region. We would not have a hard time getting them to put service centers here,” he said. One of Hardin’s goals is to create jobs that pay well enough for people to buy houses with just one job, which he said would make them more likely to start a family in the area. Families are something the area needs. Hardin said in Scotts Bluff County, the ratio of adults to children was two to one, and in Kimball and Banner counties it’s three to one and nine to one, respectively. Hardin said he aims to increase the population by drawing in families who want to stay in the area. To do that, he wants to bring in more high-quality jobs.


The revenue increase from having such jobs would help with the state’s tax dilemmas. He said he’d prefer for job growth at a local level. This would be an alternative to the the tax plans currently in consideration, such as the EPIC Consumption tax plan which would see property and income tax replaced with one singular tax.


“Let the parents have direct access to those who are influencing their children,” he said.

Hardin said the difference between liberals and conservatives was that the former try to enact laws that feel good, while the latter try to enact ones that do good. Still, he said it was important to try to get things done by working with people with other perspectives.


“You have to spend time with people who are not on the same page as you. They’re not singing from the same hymn book as you…and you have to be secure enough in who you are and how you are and why you are to get to know them,” he said. If people from across the aisle or the state aren’t agreeable, it’s time to switch tactics.

“…Hopefully they reciprocate but if they don’t, you go on offense.”

Hardin said he has the drive to be assertive with the values of both conservatives and people from the western side of Nebraska.

“I think we’re about to experience a conservative wave across the United States, including at the state level. And it’s not so much an issue of ideas,” he said. “…I think we’re going through some buyer’s remorse from 2020, with what happened at a presidential level down through states.”