Politico Profiles Kansas SOS Race

October 17, 2014 - Leave a Response

The Kansas Republican Party’s infighting has not only put the governor’s mansion and a Senate seat in play this year — it’s also offered Democrats a tantalizing shot at ousting one of the GOP’s leading immigration and voter ID hard-liners.

Kris Kobach, the 48-year-old Kansas secretary of state, helped draft the highly contentious Arizona immigration law, urged Mitt Romney to advocate for “self-deportation” and has been the driving force behind Kansas’ far-reaching voter ID law, which requires not just identification but also proof of citizenship. When Democrats tried to remove their struggling Senate candidate’s name from the ballot here to help Greg Orman, the independent in the race, Kobach turned to the courts to try to block them.

Conservatives admire Kobach’s willingness to tackle divisive social issues and take on the left, even if it has landed him in court battles with the Justice Department. Liberals revile him for policies and links to groups they say are hostile to minorities; they also accuse him of using his nonpartisan office for political purposes, including interfering in the Senate race.

Kobach apologizes for nothing and says he’s simply pushing the government to follow the “rule of law.” “Absolutely,” he says when asked if he still favors stringent policies that encourage undocumented immigrants to self-deport. “And it works.”

But it’s that conservative warrior image that has made Kobach yet another Republican at risk of being booted out in Kansas, which has emerged as the most unpredictable state of the 2014 election cycle.

After years of being sidelined by the tea party, moderate Republicans in Kansas are leading a backlash against GOP Gov. Sam Brownback and Republican Sen. Pat Roberts, and Kobach may not escape their wrath, either. He is facing a surprisingly tough race against former state Sen. Jean Schodorf, a Republican-turned-Democrat who is casting Kobach as more concerned with ideological crusades than properly executing his official duties.

In a state that President Barack Obama lost in 2012 by a whopping 22 points, Nov. 4 may yield a Democratic governor (Paul Davis), an independent senator who could help Democrats keep the majority (Orman) and a Democratic secretary of state. In recent days, House Republican leaders have also had to move to shore up Rep. Lynn Jenkins, who is suddenly in a dogfight for her Topeka-area House seat.

Polls have varied in the secretary of state’s race, at times putting Schodorf up or finding a tie; a survey this week by the Democratic firm Public Policy Polling, however, found Kobach holding a 6-point lead. Still, while he can rally the base like few others, some Republicans fear he could turn off middle-of-the-road independents ahead of Election Day.

More: http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=1A7068D7-6C5B-41E2-A63A-92D5644D2D35

Ks Dem Spokx Fired After Calling Some Small Kansas Towns “Crapholes”

October 16, 2014 - Leave a Response

The spokesman for the Kansas Democratic Party, Dakota Loomis, was fired Thursday fire calling some small Kansas towns “Crapholes”.
“Dakota’s remarks were reprehensible, and nothing short of termination is in order here ” said Jason Perkey, The Executive Director of the Kansas Democrats.
The Wichita Eagle reported Loomis was fired after his remarks were reporting in a Pittsburg, Kansas newspaper.
“Republican state Sens. Jeff King of Independence and Jake LaTurner of Pittsburg said Loomis should be fired over his posting about Cherryvale, Columbus and Galena. The since-deleted comment called them leading contenders for “most craphole small towns in Kansas.”’ The Eagle wrote.
The Pittsburg newspaper reported Loomis posted the remarks on a website dealing with Kansas basketball.
The move comes as Kansas Democrats find Thur candidate for Governor, Paul Davis in a close battle with incumbent Sam Brownback.
Brownback is seeking a second term.
Kansas Republicans are also fighting g off a challenge to Republican incumbent Senator Pat Roberts. .
He is being challenged by Independent candidate Greg Orman.

Orman & Roberts Clash in Debate III

October 16, 2014 - Leave a Response

(AP) – Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts called independent candidate Greg Orman’s support of abortion rights “unconscionable” during their last debate Wednesday and suggested that helping fellow Republicans recapture a Senate majority was the top issue in their race.

Orman countered by saying he trusts women to make decisions about their reproductive health care and accused the three-term GOP incumbent of spreading “falsehoods” about him in his campaign as a centrist. Orman said that if voters believe Washington is working well, “I’m not your guy.”

Republicans have won every U.S. Senate race in the state since 1932, but this year’s race has received national attention since Democrat Chad Taylor dropped out last month, making Roberts more vulnerable and jeopardizing the GOP’s drive to win a Senate majority.

Roberts continued his attempts to unify the party by portraying Orman as a close ally of President Barack Obama and U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, both Democrats.

“What this boils down to is: A vote for Pat Roberts is a vote for a Republican majority in the Senate,” Roberts said in his opening statement. “The No. 1 thing is to get a Republican majority in the United States Senate to end the gridlock and stop the Obama-Reid agenda.”

Orman responded that Roberts’ campaign is “making up facts” in tying him to Obama and Reid and said “numerous Republicans” have endorsed his campaign.

“I think we need to look past those falsehoods and pay attention to what the truth is,” Orman said.

The candidates sparred on numerous issues, including immigration and the economy, but one of their sharpest exchanges came over abortion.

Orman noted the decades of debate over abortion and said, “It prevents us from talking about other important issues, and what I’d like to see us do is start focusing on some of the big problems that we absolutely need to get our arms around if we’re going to preserve the American dream and our financial futures.”

Roberts, a strong abortion opponent, took issue with Orman’s remarks. “Get past the rights of the unborn?” Roberts said.

Later, he told Orman, “I think that’s unconscionable, Greg, I really do.”

In reply, Orman acknowledged abortion is an important issue. “I just think we’ve spent a lot of time as a country debating it, and it’s time to start debating other important issues as well,” he said.

At one point during the debate, Roberts lost his place. He also stumbled on several responses and appeared fixated on touting his endorsements.

On the issue of immigration, Orman said the country needs a policy that secures the border but is practical. He noted that many industries rely on immigrant labor and said the U.S. can’t just deport 11 million people.

Roberts, who has accused Orman of supporting amnesty for people living in the U.S. illegally, seemed to nonetheless agree with Orman, saying he never suggested the country deport 11 million people.

The two candidates had their third joint appearance in the studio at Wichita station KSN.

Afterward, Orman told reporters he hopes to send the message to other independents that they should run for public office.

Republicans need a net gain of six seats to regain control of the Senate, and it has always counted on the 78-year-old Roberts winning re-election. Orman is a wealthy 45-year-old Olathe businessman and co-founder of a private equity firm who touts his business experience.


October 15, 2014 - Leave a Response

Royals fans cheer Royals pennant clinching game at Walsh’s Corner Cocktails.

Roberts Blasts Obama on Ebola But Missed Full Committee Hearing Last Month on Extent o the Threat

October 14, 2014 - Leave a Response

Ks. Senator Pat Roberts

Kansas Senator Pat Roberts Tuesday blasted President Obama’s handling of the Ebola crisis, but Roberts missed a hearing last month in Washington on the issue.
Roberts’ Health Committee held a hearing Sept. 16th. It was called, “A Joint Full Committee Hearing: Ebola in West Africa: A global Challenge and Public Health Threat”. Two panels of government health experts testified at the hearing.
Roberts was in Washington that day. He voted on two roll call votes on the Senate floor.
The hearing took place in the weeks after Americans saw the first images if several people wearing anti-contamination suits being hospitalized because they were suspected of having the disease. Roberts’campaign acknowledges he missed the meeting.
Campaign Manager Corry Bliss issued a statement Tuesday.
“Senator Roberts’ staff monitored the hearing, and he was briefed accordingly; however, you don’t need to sit in a hearing room to understand the President’s failure to address the Ebola crisis and protect the American public,” Bliss’ statement read.
Tuesday Roberts also called for the US to ban travel to the United States by West Africans in order to control the spread if the disease in this country.
A third party group, ‘Committee to Elect Independent Senate’, raised the issue of Roberts’ attendance in their first Kansas commercial of the campaign.
The group says Roberts missed 73% of his full committee hearings so far in 2014. It says he missed 58% of his 2013 full committee hearings.
Roberts has seats on several influential committees.
He is the ranking Member of the Senate Agriculture Committees.
If Republicans take control of the Senate next month, he may become the next chairman of the Senate AG committee
He is also a member of the Senate’s Rules panel; Finance; and Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. That was the committee that conducted the ebola hearing.


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