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Milton Wolf Tag

The last time we visited the Kansas Senate race, we noted that Republican Pat Roberts was at risk, but that he may have caught a lucky break when the Democratic candidate was not permitted to take his name off the ballot in order to unite around the independent candidate. Having the Democrat's name on the ballot would have siphoned away some votes from the independent challenger, helping Roberts. The Kansas Supreme Court, however, ruled yesterday that the Democrat's name must be removed from the ballot:
The Kansas Supreme Court ruled unanimously Thursday that the state must remove the name of the Democratic candidate running against Republican Sen. Pat Roberts from the November ballot, adding another twist to a now-hotly contested race. The court's decision leaves independent Greg Orman, who has been rising in the polls, as the only major opponent currently in the running to take on the 78-year-old incumbent. The court agreed with Democrat Chad Taylor, saying his formal letter of withdrawal to the secretary of state's office was sufficient to get his name off the ballot. The court also said it did not "need to act" regarding Secretary of State Kris Kobach's "allegation" that the Democratic party must name a new candidate for the race. Kobach said earlier Thursday that the Democratic Party is legally obligated to pick a new nominee and set a Sept. 26 deadline.
There had been the possibility that Democrats would be forced to name a replacement:

Dr. Milton Wolf's primary challenge to Kansas Senator Pat Roberts fell shy last night, but by a much closer margin than just about anyone predicted, 48-41. We supported Dr. Wolf, as someone who would help move the Republican Party and the Republic forward, departing from the stale insider Washington, D.C. games. A "scandal" regarding some old Facebook posts of anonymous patient x-rays sapped Wolf's momentum early in the race, and probably cost him some large backers who might otherwise agree with his politics. But as the race progressed, Wolf picked up steam as Roberts faltered and became portrayed as a D.C. insider out of touch, both physically and philosophically, with Kansans. Despite the loss, let's give Dr. Milton Wolf a round of applause for fighting the good fight with enormous odds against him. According to Politico, a key factor -- if not the key factor -- in Roberts' win was help from the National Republican Senatorial Committee, the same group that rescued Thad Cochran. The NRSC is an incumbent protection organization, plain and simple. That's its job, help protect Republican incumbents. Period. No matter how bad. No matter the implications for the Party long term. Many people are critical of the NRSC, because they confuse the NRSC's role. Politico reports:

Milton Wolf is closing in the polls, although Pat Roberts still has a sizable double digit lead. But in a primary, particularly a closed primary, momentum and turnout can be everything, and that has Roberts supporters worried. The Kansas political machine remembers Mississippi, and how close that...

The Mississippi Senate Runoff election was viewed by the media as the last, best chance for a Tea Party inspired Republican primary challenger to unseat a Republican incumbent in a primary. But there remains the Kansas primary in which Dr. Milton Wolf is challenging Pat Roberts on August 5. Legal Insurrection supports Dr. Wolf as the type of inspirational next generation of conservative Republican we need to lead us, not merely go along to get along. Can Dr. Wolf pull off the upset? The two races, several weeks out from the primary, appear to have similarities: An incumbent Senator who's been in Washington, D.C., for over forty years, a seemingly unbreachable power machine with money to burn and years of experience winning, and all the makings of yet another Tea Party vs. Establishment showdown. On the surface, Dr. Wolf would seem to have a difficult climb. A Survey USA poll released last week shows Wolf with 23% to Roberts 56% among likely GOP voters. Unlike Mississippi though, Kansas has closed primaries, and Dr. Wolf's main problem is lack of name recognition. According to his internal polling, among people who know of both candidates, the gap is much, much closer, with Dr. Wolf actually leading. In Mississippi, early April polling showed Thad Cochran with at 17% lead for the June 3 original primary, but that gap closed quickly in the final weeks to a virtual dead heat on June 3.  Could the gap close in Kansas if national attention focused on the race? We sat down with Dr. Wolf to get his side of the story. Here's what he had to say:

Last night's upset of Eric Cantor shocked everyone. I said it after the Missouri Senate Primary, and it holds even more true now, The Lesson of Iowa and Mississippi primaries: Don’t give up on Kansas:
Joni Ernst and Chris McDaniel had no chance of winning, until she won outright and he won but is in a runoff. Both came out of nowhere because voters rallied around a Tea Party backed candidate. In the case of Mississippi, the battle was against a legacy entitled incumbent. The lesson is not to forget Kansas, where Dr. Milton Wolf is challenging legacy entitled incumbent Pat Roberts in the August 5 primary. Roberts has tons of money and the Republican establishment behind him.  And a house in Virginia which is his real home. It can happen again.  Don’t settle for less.
There is a certain irony that so many people are saying Eric Cantor's loss in Virginia may be harbinger of things to come in Kansas, since Pat Roberts spend almost all his time in Virginia, and that has become a huge campaign issue. NBC News reports:

One of the big issues in Dr. Milton Wolf's challenge to Pat Roberts in the Kansas Republican Senate primary is that Roberts isn't a resident of Kansas. Roberts hasn't lived in Kansas in any meaningful sense for decades. Unless you consider renting a couch being a resident: So Wolf's campaign supporters filed a challenge to Roberts' ability to appear on the ballot because Roberts doesn't meet the residency requirement. The elections panel deciding the issue all had endorsed Roberts. although they sent "substitutes" to the meeting:
Secretary of State Kris Kobach, Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer and Attorney General Derek Schmidt, all Republicans who've endorsed Roberts, comprise the Objects Board. But all of them sent substitutes to the board meeting.
The Board qualified Roberts for the Ballot. Steve Kraske writes in The Kansas City Star, Sen. Pat Roberts’ residency in Kansas is a valid question:

Legal Insurrection's first Operation Counterweight 2014 Senate candidate....

I've known him from the blogosphere, where he ran The Wolf Files. Now he's running for Senate in Kansas. This radio ad, in which mention is made of him being "The Next Ted Cruz" is sure to get attention, as it has at The Hill:
Milton Wolf is quickly claiming the Ted Cruz mantle in his primary against Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.). The Senate hopeful and second cousin to President Obama, Wolf is launching his first radio ad ahead of the August primary featuring former Kansas Rep. Jim Ryun (R) touting Wolf as “the next Ted Cruz.” Ryun is chairman of the conservative group the Madison Project, which has endorsed Wolf. Senate Conservatives Fund has also backed Wolf. “You see, Milton Wolf is a doctor, not a politician, and they’re already calling him the next Ted Cruz [R-Texas],” Ryun says in the ad, a reference to an article in The Week examining whether he's trying to follow in Cruz's footsteps. He goes on to praise Wolf’s conservative credentials and his proclaimed goal of repealing and replacing ObamaCare. “You wanna drive President Obama crazy? Send Dr. Milton Wolf to the U.S. Senate,” Ryun says at the end of the ad.