Secretary of State Pompeo Nixes Run for Kansas Senate Seat
Secretary of State Michael Pompeo will not run for an open Senate seat in his home state of Kansas, a person familiar with the matter said Monday night.
Pompeo went to Capitol Hill on Monday and told Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell that he would not be a candidate, according to the person, who was granted anonymity to discuss a private meeting.
McConnell and other prominent Republicans had urged Pompeo, who represented Kansas in Congress, to enter the race to replace Senator Pat Roberts, who is retiring.
Republicans face a competitive and fractured primary field. Some GOP officials worry that Kris Kobach, the controversial Republican who lost the state’s 2018 gubernatorial race, could put the seat in jeopardy if he emerges as the nominee.
Private Republican polling has shown Kobach to be formidable in the primary.
Several other candidates are competing for the Republican nomination, including Representative Roger Marshall. National Democrats have rallied behind Barbara Bollier, a state senator who left the G.O.P. to become a Democrat a little more than a year ago, as their preferred candidate. …
Republicans hold a relatively narrow, 53-seat majority in the Senate, and they appear to be on defense in nearly all of the competitive races this year, including in blue states such as Colorado and Maine and Republican-leaning swing states like North Carolina, Arizona, Georgia and Iowa. Democrats have only one incumbent senator who is clearly vulnerable to defeat, Doug Jones of Alabama.
But both parties have been trying to stretch the Senate battlefield, hoping to increase their odds of an outright majority through an upset win or two. For Democrats, Kansas is among those long-shot targets, along with Texas, Kentucky and South Carolina.
With trum in the White House, many Republicans fear a major catastrophe between now and Election Day. They are on the defensive, with over 20 Senate seats in play. A major Trump fustercluck would likely flip the Senate and give Dems control of the Whitye House and Congress.