WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Republican Pat Roberts is retiring from his Senate Seat.
On Monday, former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach announced he would run for the seat. Kobach joins a field of already familiar names in Kansas.
“One name already on the national scene is a bit of a wild card. Mike Pompeo has plenty of time if he wants to run for the seat,” said Dr. Neal Allen, Wichita State University professor.
Barry Grissom is the former U.S. Attorney for the State of Kansas and is running for Pat Roberts seat as a Democrat. Another Democrat is Nancy Boyda a former U.S. congresswoman who previously represented the 2nd Congressional District in Kansas.
Republicans already running also include current Kansas Treasurer Jake LaTurner. Businessman Dave Lindstrom, who is also a former Kansas City Chief defensive end, is running as well.
Dr. Allen says Mike Pompeo might be the most recognizable name on the national scene as he is the current U.S. Secretary of State.
“Mike Pompeo’s job as Secretary of State gives him more influence than any Senator has. But being Secretary of State has a time limit on it. At most, five years from now,” said Dr. Allen. “So if he wants to keep being in national politics for the next 20 years, being a Senator makes a lot of sense.”
Mike Pompeo has not made any public statements recently about his political future.
“Pompeo probably clears the field,” said Dr. Allen. “But he can wait all the way to the next spring to do that.”
Dr. Allen says, while the field already has familiar names, there could be more candidates with name recognition who later jump into the race.
“The Kansas Senate President Susan Wagle has not announced plans,” said Dr. Allen. “But we will see if she gets into the race.”
Dr. Allen says you can expect to see a lot of advertising on television, on your phone and online.
“Even though we are a year out, you can expect a strong run of advertising,” said Dr. Allen. “It will be an active political year.”