Nebraska Gov. Jim Pillen said Thursday he was appointing the former governor. Pete Ricketts is set to fill the Senate seat vacated by Republican Ben Sasse’s resignation.
Ricketts, a Republican who ended his second term as governor earlier this month, will hold the seat until a special election in 2024. The seat will then return to Nebraska’s ballot in 2026 for a full six-year term.
Pills and Ricketts appeared together at a joint press conference at the Nebraska State Capitol in Lincoln, where Pills described Ricketts’ selection as “very, very obvious.”
Sasse officially resigned Sunday to become president of the University of Florida, a job he will take up next month.
Ricketts’ endorsement in last year’s Republican gubernatorial primary helped Pillen put himself at the forefront of a packed GOP field. The pill went into effect last week.
He said Ricketts was “long-term committed” to try to keep the seat.
“I don’t believe in placeholders. I believe that every day counts,” Pillen said.
This story has been updated with additional reports.