Maybe Kansas Republicans will argue that a win is a win, and that there’s nothing to see here. The fact is that there is quite a lot to see in the surprisingly close results in yesterday’s special election to replace Rep. Mike Pompeo, now the head of the CIA.
Republican Ron Estes, the twice-elected state treasurer, defeated Democrat James Thompson by a margin of 52.5% to 45.7%. A Libertarian candidate came in with just under 2%.
Pompeo won re-election in November by 31%. Kansas is a very red state. Yes, Republican Governor Sam Brownback is unpopular, and excuses will be made about this being a local election. Still, I can’t imagine Republicans that jubilant this morning, except perhaps that they dodged a bullet. As they say, it’s always exhilarating to have been shot at and missed.