Mayor Stothert endorsed by the OPOA for the first time


Bryce Johnson

Photo of Mayor Jean Stothert being interview at her campaign headquarters.

Bryce Johnson

On Mar. 2, Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert received the endorsement of the Omaha Police Officers Association, (OPOA), which represents the around 900 sworn peace officers in the Omaha Police Department. The endorsement comes as the primary election is fast approaching with it scheduled for Apr. 6.

This is the first time Mayor Stothert has been endorsed by the OPOA in her two terms as mayor. In 2017, neither Stothert, nor her challenger, Health Mello, were endorsed by the association. Additionally, in 2013, the incumbent Mayor Jim Suttle, who was later defeated by Stothert, received the endorsement from the union.

In a press conference announcing the endorsement of Mayor Stothert, the president of the OPOA, Sgt. Anthony Conner, announced the union’s support for the mayor.

“Because of her record of leadership and accomplishment, this endorsement was unanimously approved by the members of the Omaha Police Officers Association,” Sgt. Conner stated. “In her 8 years as Mayor, Jean Stothert has been unafraid to stand with our Officers and do all that is necessary to ensure the protection of our families, our neighborhoods, and our businesses—even in difficult times.”

He continues with noting the difficulties of being a police officer and what the support of the Mayor to the Omaha Police Department means.

“Serving as a Police Officer is among the toughest jobs in the country, and the events of last year added even more difficulty and scrutiny to Police departments everywhere,” he continued. “Without the support we receive from our elected leaders, and especially from Mayor Stothert, our job would be nearly impossible.”

After Sgt. Conner’s remarks, Mayor Stothert spoke to the importance of law enforcement.

“Public safety is my most important responsibility. It is an honor to work with the men and the women of the Omaha Police Department,” she continues. “The progress that we have made together has been remarkable.”

Throughout Mayor Stothert’s remarks, she boasts several accomplishments she has achieved with the OPD such as adding over 100 new police officers to the department. Other accomplishments talked about included: decreased homicide rates over the last 8 years, the lowest number of officer involved shootings ever, the best police response times of the decade and the 5th police precinct being opened.

The Mayor has been known for being outright in her support for the police and many of her comments during the press conference backed this up.

“Any effort in Omaha to defund the police department will not succeed—not on my watch. More than ever we need a well funded, well paid, well trained, professional police department. A safe community cannot exist without law enforcement,” she stated.

Mayor Stothert also spoke to what the endorsement by the OPOA meant to her.

“The support of the Omaha Police Officers Association is also very gratifying to me personally. I see the officers on and off duty every day. They contribute to our community in so many way beyond wearing a badge. They volunteer, they coach, they participate in community efforts like food bank drives, and they support those who are less fortunate throughout the years,” she continues. “With your help, the momentum of our growing, dynamic, and generous city will continue and it will be even safer, and stronger than before.”