Barbara Bollier wins Democratic Senate primary in Kansas

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WASHINGTON (AP) — A party-switching Kansas legislator who has raised eyebrows with her campaign’s fundraising success has easily won the Democratic nomination for an open U.S. Senate seat.

Democrats had expected state Sen. Barbara Bollier to prevail in Tuesday’s election because she has raised $8 million for her race and has the backing of party leaders, including former U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary and two-term Gov. Kathleen Sebelius. Her only primary opponent was retired Wichita court services officer and frequent congressional candidate Robert Tillman.

Bollier is a retired Kansas City-area anesthesiologist and a former moderate Republican who garnered headlines by switching parties at the end of 2018.

She is seeking the seat held by retiring four-term GOP Sen. Pat Roberts. Republicans had an 11-person primary field topped by western Kansas Rep. Roger Marshall, hard-right conservative Kris Kobach and Kansas City plumbing company founder Bob Hamilton.

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