Former governor and Sen. Bob Kerrey (D) fell short in his quest to be the comeback kid as he failed to fill the seat being vacated by retiring Sen. Ben Nelson (D).

With 63 percent of precincts reporting, Kerrey trailed state senator Deb Fischer, who led the Democrat 58 percent to 42 percent.

Kerrey won the endorsement of Chuck Hagel, a two-term former GOP senator from the state. Fischer got a hand from Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and conservative groups.