A Kansas board rejected a complaint challenging Sen. Pat Roberts's ability to appear on the ballot because of concerns over his residency, clearing the way for the Republican to proceed normally with his campaign.
The State Objections Board’s decision means the three-term senator will be on the ballot in the Aug. 5 Republican primary.
Eight northeast Kansas residents had objected to the ballot listing, arguing that Roberts lives in Alexandria, Virginia, and not Dodge City, Kansas.
Secretary of State Kris Kobach, Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer and Attorney General Derek Schmidt, all Republicans who’ve endorsed Roberts, comprise the Objects Board. But all of them sent substitutes to the board meeting.
The Kansas Republican Party stepped into the dispute Saturday by sending the board members a four-page legal analysis suggesting they didn’t have the authority to settle the issue. The analysis from Clay Barker, the state GOP’s general counsel, cited the section of the U.S. Constitution that says each house of Congress is the judge of members’ elections and qualifications.
Roberts acknowledged in an interview with the New York Times, published in February, that he registered to vote using the address of Dodge City supporters who he stays with and pays $300 a month in rent to when he is in the area. The story also revealed that Roberts had switched his voting address from a property he owns and has long leased to others. Roberts and his wife also own a home in Northern Virginia.
Roberts's primary opponent, Milton Wolf, has been repeatedly slamming Roberts over his residency, advertising on the matter, even referring to Roberts in media releases as Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Va.).