(CNN) - Another Republican has announced his intent to run against Nebraska Democratic Senator Ben Nelson in 2012– and he is hoping the fourth time is the charm.
Don Stenberg, the current Nebraska State Treasurer, announced Tuesday that he intends to run for the Senate seat currently occupied by Nelson. The Nebraska Attorney General, Republican Jon Bruning, announced his bid for the seat last month. Businessman Pat Flynn is also running for the GOP nomination.
Stenberg is no stranger to how the Senate race works– he ran in 1996, 2000 and 2006. He was the Republican nominee for Senate in 2000, losing narrowly to Nelson 51 percent to 49 percent.
In a statement regarding his decision, Stenberg touted his conservative credentials and criticized Nelson's ties to earmarks, the stimulus program and President Obama.
"Under President Obama, assisted by Senator Ben Nelson, our nation is going in the wrong direction," Stenberg said. "It is the direction of vast budget deficits and heavy-handed federal government regulation."
Stenberg also attacked Nelson for what critics have called the "Cornhusker Kickback" - a deal that Nelson made during the health care reform debate. Nelson agreed to support the health care bill in return for compromise language on federal funding for abortion. As a part of the deal, the federal government would also pay 100 percent of Nebraska's tab indefinitely for expanding Medicaid for low-income Americans.
"His wheeling and dealing to support the federal takeover of health care in exchange for the Cornhusker Kickback embarrassed our state and imposed a massive new federal mandate on all Americans," Stenberg said in the statement.