Kris Kobach Defeated In Kansas GOP Senate Primary, Activist Cori Bush Outs Rep. Lacy Clay In Missouri
Kansas’ Senate seat is expected to remain in the hands of the GOP, after controversial conservative Kris Kobach was defeated in Tuesday’s Republican primary by Rep. Roger Marshall.
Kobach is staunchly anti-immigration and pro-voting restrictions. He formerly served as counsel for the Immigration Reform Law Institute, the legal branch of the Federation for American Immigration Reform, which is labeled a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
He served as Secretary of State of Kansas, where he implemented strict voter identification laws. He unsuccessfully ran for Governor of Kansas in 2018, despite receiving an endorsement from President Donald Trump.
Republicans in Kansas worried that a Kobach win would give Democrats ample leeway to flip the longtime Republican Senate seat blue, and 40.3% voted for Marshall to be the Republican nominee, compared to Kobach’s 26.3%.
Democratic nominee Barbara Bollier, a former Republican and state senator, still believes she has a chance against Marshall – though he is considered a tougher opponent than Kobach.
After securing the Democratic nomination, Bollier tweeted: “It doesn’t matter who our opponent in #KSSen is, we know that they’ll be a hyper-partisan working to take healthcare coverage from thousands of Kansans in the middle of a pandemic. That’s for sure.”
It doesn't matter who our opponent in #KSSen is, we know that they’ll be a hyper-partisan working to take healthcare coverage from thousands of Kansans in the middle of a pandemic. That’s for sure.
Chip in to help us kick-off the general election: https://t.co/AmLFZiKGZ2
— Dr. Barbara Bollier (@BarbaraBollier) August 5, 2020
Bush’s victory came two years after Clay beat her by 20% in a primary. Clay and Bush, who are both black, became heavily involved in racial justice issues after the police killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson.
Clay is an establishment Democrat, as his family held the seat for half a century, with him serving for 20 years.
Bush had also been one of the subjects of a Netflix documentary, Knock Down The House, which followed her previous campaign as well as three other progressive women, including that of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-New York).
Although she did not campaign alongside Bush as she did in 2018, Ocasio-Cortez tweeted her congratulations shortly after the win.
“Absolutely incredible.Congratulations, [Cori Bush] – YOU accomplished this w/ the people of Ferguson & MO1,” she wrote. “You‘ve shown that the power of grassroots, mass-movement politics is stronger than gatekeepers & big money – it’s about advancing the tide of justice whose time has come.”
You‘ve shown that the power of grassroots, mass-movement politics is stronger than gatekeepers & big money – it’s about advancing the tide of justice whose time has come. https://t.co/mYOZKxitEW
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) August 5, 2020
It was a tight race, with Bush narrowly winning 48.6% of the vote and Clay receiving 45.5%. If elected in November, Bush will likely become Missouri’s first black woman to represent Missouri in Congress.