Every day seems to bring a new announcement about the 2020 congressional elections in Kansas. It’s getting mighty hard to keep up with who’s in and who’s out!
Kansans will vote on four U.S. House Representatives and one Senator in 2020 and with the retirement of current U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts (R) there has been a lot of jockeying for position.
U.S. Rep. Roger Marshall (R-CD 1) is giving up his House seat to run for the Senate, opening the “Big First” congressional district. Just this week, Rep. Troy Waymaster (R-Bunker Hill) announced his candidacy. Also in the race on the Republican side is former Lt. Gov. Tracey Mann and Garden City ophthalmologist Bill Clifford. The only Democratic candidate is teacher Kali Barnett.
The second congressional district is now represented by U.S. Rep. Steve Watkins (R-CD 2) but there would appear to be an inside fight over this one. Former Governor Jeff Colyer has persuaded State Treasurer Jake LaTurner to give up his race for the U.S. Senate and take on Watkins in the Republican primary. Democrat Abbie Hodgson shut down her campaign, saying there was no viable way for her to win the race and standing aside for a better candidate.
The third congressional district is currently represented by U.S. Rep. Sharice Davids (D-CD 3) who easily bested Republican incumbent Kevin Yoder in 2018. Republican candidates are lining up for the chance to take on Davids.
The fourth congressional district would appear to be safely in the hands of incumbent Ron Estes (R-CD 4) at this time.
As for that open Senate seat, last week former Democratic Congresswoman Nancy Boyda ended her campaign. This week Kansas Sen. Barbara Bollier (D-Mission Hills) announced she was a candidate and a day later former U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom announced he was ending his campaign and endorsing Bollier. Also in the race on the Democratic side are former Manhattan Mayor Usha Reddi and retired Sedgwick County Court Services Officer Robert Tillman.
The Republican pack includes Rep. Roger Marshall, Kansas Senate President Susan Wagle, and maybe, just maybe, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. There are other names floating around with some denials and some no comments.
Here’s what we can say with certainty: None of this is certain! We are sure there are others thinking of getting in these races and some of those now in will likely drop out later. But it looks to be an exciting few months!