WICHITA, Kan. - U.S. Senator Pat Roberts managed to bet challenger Dr. Milton Wolf in the Republican Primary for U.S. Senate, but the results could indicate some weakness for Roberts in the general election.
Roberts is expected to face Democrat Shawnee County District Attorney Chad Taylor in the November election, but there's a spoiler in the race. Independent candidate Greg Orman, an Olathe businessman, has a lot of money and he's willing to spend it to get his message across.
Unofficial returns indicate about half or more of Kansas Republican voters cast their ballots for someone besides Pat Roberts. Also, Roberts lost Republican voter-rich Johnson County to Dr. Milton Wolf, his main challenger.
The contentious primary had Wolf and Roberts arguing over who was more conservative. One of the questions for many observers now is whether Roberts will try to move a little to the center of the political spectrum for the general election.
Governor Sam Brownback easily won the Republican primary for governor Tuesday, but the election may have uncovered some weaknesses in Brownback's bid for re-election in November.
Brownback challenger Jennifer Winn of Wichita managed to get over 35 percent of the vote, and perhaps higher, according to unofficial results. Fort Hays State Unviersity political scientist Chapman Rackaway had said if she got over 20 percent, it would signal problems for Brownback.
A vote for Winn, who appeared to campaign little, was seen as an anti-Brownback vote. Winn actually won at least one county, Pratt, and could have won more when all the votes are counted.
Brownback will face Democrat State Representative Paul Davis in the November election. A statewide poll by Survey USA indicates Davis is running ahead of Brownback at this point, but there a lot of time between now and November and a lot of campaigning to come.