Exclusive: Omaha’s Lee Terry: ‘I was stunned to see Susie Buffett gets to commission USS Omaha’
The former eight-term congressman from Omaha, Nebraska told Big League Politics he cannot believe the Navy would choose such a polarizing figure as Susan A. “Susie” Buffett to sponsor the new warship USS Omaha at Saturday’s commissioning in San Diego.
“I was stunned to see Susie Buffett gets to commission USS Omaha,” said former Republican congressman Lee R. Terry, who is considered a leading candidate to challenge Sen. Benjamin E. Sasse in the state’s 2020 Republican primary. “It was certainly interesting if not odd–especially how liberal she is, I would think she really disliked the military.”
At the ceremony, as ship’s company is ready to man their stations, Buffett gives the command: “Man our ship and bring her to life!” As the ship’s sponsor, Buffett is expected to maintain a relationship with ship’s company and she will be invited to all ceremonies and major events at the warship.
Terry said anyone familiar with Omaha politics is aware the Buffett is a very partisan supporter of leftwing causes and she has not been shy about using her family’s billions to overwhelm opponents.
“She is the most partisan and the biggest heavyweight in Omaha,” the former congressman said.
“It’s just that she is an uber-liberal and she accused me of being a racist one time just because I grew up in northwest Iowa,” he said.
“It is not just politics, it is how the schools are run in Omaha–she’s got her finger stuck in all of it,” he said. “She pushes people around.”
Terry said he supports the work done by one of Buffet’s charities, Girls Incorporated of Omaha, which works with minority and at-risk girls in the city.
“Of course, the issue of abortion always comes up at Girls Inc, because she wants to make sure it is a pro-abortion program,” he said.
Another local charity of Buffett’s is what used to be called the YWCA, or the Young Women’s Christian Association in the city, which operated a women’s shelter and other support services, he said.
“Susie made it into a pro-abortion organization that helped women get abortions,” he said. “She even changed the name to Women’s Center for Advancement, because she didn’t like the word Christian in the name.”
Terry said that the Navy could have done a better job choosing a woman to represent all of Omaha, instead of Buffett, like Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert, who is a Republican, but not a harsh partisan like Buffett.
Stothert took office in 2013, three years before the Navy choose Buffett.
Buffett leads the Omaha, Nebraska-based Sherwood Foundation, which has become her primary vehicle for her political agenda, including the expansion of abortion.
“We support a woman’s right to self-determination about reproductive health choices,” according to Sherwood’s website. “We expect our grantees serving women and girls to ensure access and education to all health care options, including abortion.”
Buffet also sits on the board of the Susan T. Buffett Foundation, named for Susie’s mother, Warren Buffett’s first wife, after her death in 2004. The late Mrs. Buffett left the foundation $2.5 billion.
Susie Buffett is considered the driving force behind the gol, and she was the one who pushed for the foundation to hire Turkish abortion advocate Turkiz Gokgol, and American abortion advocates Judith De Sarno and Tracy Weitz.
Rodney L. Edwards, a former senior aide to Stothert, told Big League Politics he could not believe the Navy picked Buffett to commission USS Omaha.
“Susie Buffet is famous for supporting liberal candidates,” he said. “She spent a lot of money when Barack Obama was first elected president and then helped turn the 2nd Congressional District blue–that was mostly funded by her with voter registration and voter turnout efforts.”
In 2014, Buffet’s efforts succeeded with the 2nd Congressional, which includes Omaha, when her candidate John B. Ashford beat Terry.
Edwards said he would have chosen Evonne Williams, who with her husband Bill runs the Nebraska Honor Flights program. Beginning in 2008, Williams and her husband have organized 11 Honor Flights that have taken 3,400 Nebraska World War II and Korea veterans to visit the memorials to those that fell in those wars.
“Somebody like Evonne would have been much more appropriate considering how she supports our military and our veterans,” he said.