Oops: Kansas Democrat who dropped out of Senate race forced to stay on the ballot

posted at 7:21 pm on September 4, 2014 by Allahpundit

If you missed it this morning, read Ed’s post now. He called it hours in advance: Under Kansas law, you can’t just withdraw after the primary. The statute says you need to give a reason, be it death, illness, or a self-professed inability to fulfill the duties of the office. The dummy who dropped out and his legal team of even bigger dummies apparently missed that part, as his letter of withdrawal didn’t say why he was quitting.

Advantage: Republican Senate takeover.

Kobach said Kansas law requires that candidates who want to be removed from the ballot submit a formal letter and also declare themselves “incapable of fulfilling the duties of office if elected.”…

Taylor issued a statement saying that he had been assured by Assistant Secretary of State Brad Bryant that his letter was sufficient. Kobach denied that claim and also contended that Taylor should have read the statute himself.

“Mr. Taylor is an attorney. He is capable of reading the statute and the statute is very clear on this point,” Kobach said. “And I would note that many non-attorneys have withdrawn from office in the past and they have all read the statute and made that declaration.”

Can’t wait to see how that argument plays out in court: “The Assistant Secretary of State was as lazy and ignorant about the law as my own legal team was, your honor.” Frankly, I don’t understand why Taylor would be allowed to plead an inability to fulfill the duties of the office in the first place. That sounds like it’s in the law to address unusual dire circumstances apart from illness that might befall a candidate before the election, e.g., if his or her spouse fell ill and the candidate needed to care for them full time. Taylor’s not facing anything like that. He’s dropping out because he’s a loser who’s going to split the Democratic vote with the independent candidate, Greg Orman, in November, all but ensuring Pat Roberts’s reelection. There’s no “this guy’s a loser” withdrawal option under Kansas law, is there?

Incidentally, we’re not … really going to lose this seat, are we? I know the race is tight right now and presumably bound to get tighter if Taylor’s name is bumped off the ballot and Democrats consolidate behind Orman, but c’mon. It’s Kansas! They haven’t sent a non-Republican to the Senate since the 1930s. It’d be beyond bizarre if they bucked what’s bound to be a Republican trend in November to unseat a guy they’ve been electing for decades. The closeness of the race right now, I take it, is due mainly to conservative irritation that Roberts beat back his primary challenge from Milton Wolf. As we get closer to election day and Republicans start to taste the prospect of a Senate majority, they’ll rally. Right? Exit question: If I’m right that this is a slam dunk, how do you explain this?


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Ha ha!

rbj on September 4, 2014 at 7:32 PM

Can’t wait to see how that argument plays out in court: “The Assistant Secretary of State was as lazy and ignorant about the law as my own legal team was, your honor.”


Brilliant!
Use the SCOAMF Defense!

PolAgnostic on September 4, 2014 at 7:32 PM

Smell the fail.

Key West Reader on September 4, 2014 at 7:33 PM

HEH!

gophergirl on September 4, 2014 at 7:34 PM

Any news on Debbie Whatshername Schultze? I heard a blurb she’s backtracking like the Italian Army.

Marcus on September 4, 2014 at 7:36 PM

Incidentally, we’re not … really going to lose this seat, are we? I know the race is tight right now and presumably bound to get tighter if Taylor’s name is bumped off the ballot and Democrats consolidate behind Orman, but c’mon. It’s Kansas! They haven’t sent a non-Republican to the Senate since the 1930s.

But, in the last 11 years, Kansas did elect Cruella Sebelius as Governor…TWICE.

Resist We Much on September 4, 2014 at 7:37 PM

hey, give roberts a break. after all he did need to go home to rest….in VIRGINIA.

dmacleo on September 4, 2014 at 7:37 PM

The statute says you need to give a reason, be it death, illness, or a self-professed inability to fulfill the duties of the office.

The clear logic stream here would have the dude kill himself for the good of the Party.

Protect the Dog Eater at all costs and I mean ALL COSTS.

Bishop on September 4, 2014 at 7:38 PM

Bob Torricelli, tanned, rested, and ready.

Ed Driscoll on September 4, 2014 at 7:39 PM

A. Seems like if he claims he’s incapable of being a Senator, he better resign from his prosecutor job as well, or anyone he convicts will have a possible grounds for appeal.

B. Yesterday, a lot of the “RINO-hunter” morons were licking their chops at Roberts losing to teach the “establishment” a lesson. Hopefully they won’t mind having a Schumer or Warren chairing the Senate judiciary committee instead of a Sessions. Not like there will be any Supreme Court nominees in the next few years…

BuzzCrutcher on September 4, 2014 at 7:40 PM

Not like there will be any Supreme Court nominees in the next few years…

BuzzCrutcher on September 4, 2014 at 7:40 PM

Agreed, it would suck if we couldn’t get another Roberts on the court.

Bishop on September 4, 2014 at 7:44 PM

Incidentally, we’re not … really going to lose this seat, are we?

I’d really like to know what good it will do winning this seat and/or control of the Senate. I doubt there’s a SCOTUS vacancy in the next two years (RBG seems intent on dying on the bench), so that isn’t an issue. There’s a Dem with a pen in the White House (he’ll just write/rewrite his own legislation from the WH; he’s been getting away with it for a while now). Finally, the Republicans will almost surely lose control of the Senate in 2016 (terrible odd with too many seats to defend, presidential election draws more Dems to the polls, etc.).

So, what’s the upside? Why care? I just don’t see anything to be excited about with more RINOs in office for two years.

xNavigator on September 4, 2014 at 7:44 PM

Holy Cow!!!! The Independent candidate is young and sooooo handsome, if he can actually string some bullsh!t words together I can see why both parties are nervous.

Cindy Munford on September 4, 2014 at 7:46 PM

Dems don’t read much of anything, so what’s new?

Roberts don’t live in Kansas anymore, so what’s new?

Sherman1864 on September 4, 2014 at 7:48 PM

When is ned going to come by and post something about how brilliant this is?

wifarmboy on September 4, 2014 at 7:53 PM

There’s no “this guy’s a loser” withdrawal option under Kansas law, is there?

This is hilarious. I’m thoroughly enjoying watching dims implode for a change. About time.

cat_owner on September 4, 2014 at 7:55 PM

The appeals, and the demagoguery, start now.

RedPepper on September 4, 2014 at 7:57 PM

There’s no “this guy’s a loser” withdrawal option under Kansas law, is there?

Yeah but there’s not not a “this guy’s a loser” withdrawal option. Huh. Just like New Jersey.

Judge_Dredd on September 4, 2014 at 7:58 PM

It’d be beyond bizarre if they bucked what’s bound to be a Republican trend in November to unseat a guy they’ve been electing for decades. The closeness of the race right now, I take it, is due mainly to conservative irritation that Roberts beat back his primary challenge from Milton Wolf. As we get closer to election day and Republicans start to taste the prospect of a Senate majority, they’ll rally. Right?

I would agree. Besides that, the “independent” in the race is about as principled as Charlie Crist. He’s identified as both an R and a dim. He’s also indicated he would caucus with whichever party controls the Senate next year.

Who wants to vote for someone with no principles? Some will, but I can’t see him winning.

cat_owner on September 4, 2014 at 7:58 PM

I wonder if Taylor would try the “Don’t vote for me! Vote Orman!” campaign now.

BigGator5 on September 4, 2014 at 8:00 PM

Incidentally, we’re not … really going to lose this seat, are we?

Don’t know. Michelle Nunn looks to be poised for victory in Ga though.

Bmore on September 4, 2014 at 8:04 PM

Bmore on September 4, 2014 at 8:04 PM

Really????

Cindy Munford on September 4, 2014 at 8:05 PM

This is the road map for Democrats to take Senate seats in Red States. Run your Democrats as ‘Independent’ and take the Democrat off the ballot in the general election. Taylor is going to caucus with Democrats for sure, that’s why he’s mum on the issue when asked. If he was going to caucus with Republicans, he would have already stated so. This guy is a Democrat in sheep’s clothing. I hope the idiots in my state can see it.

Corporal Tunnel on September 4, 2014 at 8:07 PM

Who wants to vote for someone with no principles? Some will, but I can’t see him winning.

cat_owner on September 4, 2014 at 7:58 PM

you should clarify, you are not talking about roberts there correct?

dmacleo on September 4, 2014 at 8:10 PM

When is ned going to come by and post something about how brilliant this is?

wifarmboy on September 4, 2014 at 7:53 PM

My thoughts exactly.

As soon as Huffpost comes up with an argument he can cut and paste.

itsspideyman on September 4, 2014 at 8:13 PM

Not letting him withdraw makes sense. He defeated a guy in the primary by only 10 pts. If he wanted to “not loose”, he should have let the other guy win the primary. Or Orman should have run in the D primary instead. Now all the Dems will not get the msg to vote for Orman and the block will be split — too bad, plan ahead!

But this is a screw up of a similar conspiracy being pulled by Thad Cochran/Haley Barbour — Cochran wins, then resigns after 6 months to let Barbour’s nephew take over.

KenInIL on September 4, 2014 at 8:28 PM

Don’t know. Michelle Nunn looks to be poised for victory in Ga though.

Bmore on September 4, 2014 at 8:04 PM

No chance in he.ll she’s down big. Except for a couple landmark bs push polls and a bs news 8 poll.

Raquel Pinkbullet on September 4, 2014 at 8:29 PM

No chance in he.ll she’s down big. Except for a couple landmark bs push polls and a bs news 8 poll.

Raquel Pinkbullet on September 4, 2014 at 8:29 PM

Nunn suffered major damage when her campaign strategy (written by a firm in San Francisco of all things) leaked and showed her to be vacuous with little understanding of Georgia (having grown up in Maryland).

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/383894/michelle-nunns-campaign-plan-eliana-johnson

Yes, she could win. It’s anyone’s game. But in only an Atlanta based poll is she ahead.

itsspideyman on September 4, 2014 at 8:50 PM

But this is a screw up of a similar conspiracy being pulled by Thad Cochran/Haley Barbour — Cochran wins, then resigns after 6 months to let Barbour’s nephew take over.

KenInIL on September 4, 2014 at 8:28 PM

I don’t want to believe this but in the modern era of zero-value politicians it can’t be discounted.

itsspideyman on September 4, 2014 at 8:53 PM

Holy Cow!!!! The Independent candidate is young and sooooo handsome, if he can actually string some bullsh!t words together I can see why both parties are nervous.

Cindy Munford on September 4, 2014 at 7:46 PM

Wow! Even though I’m relatively new, I’ve read your posts for years. This kind of loses you a few points.

However, since you’re a woman, I forgive you (I have two teenage daughters).

UnstChem on September 4, 2014 at 8:53 PM

Wow! Even though I’m relatively new, I’ve read your posts for years. This kind of loses you a few points.

However, since you’re a woman, I forgive you (I have two teenage daughters).

UnstChem on September 4, 2014 at 8:53 PM

.
It’s ironic you don’t realize how many “points” a post like this will cost a newb.

PolAgnostic on September 4, 2014 at 9:07 PM

The gambit wasn’t likely to work anyway.

So many Democratic voters are trained to vote for party and not for candidates that there is no easy way to transfer their votes. It isn’t as if they pay attention to politics – that’s why they are Democrats in the first place.

Kansas doesn’t have party-lever voting, only a dozen or states still do, which would make it almost impossible because lazy Democrats are so used to just marking the master button and not going down the individual races.

Let’s face it: the only way this Reid gamble pays off is if the Fox voters vote for the “independent” Democrat, which would confirm that a significant number of the “insurgent” voters aren’t really Republicans anyway.

Adjoran on September 4, 2014 at 9:15 PM

It’s ironic you don’t realize how many “points” a post like this will cost a newb.

PolAgnostic on September 4, 2014 at 9:07 PM

It’s ironic you don’t even get how much irony was my post.

UnstChem on September 4, 2014 at 9:20 PM

*was in my

UnstChem on September 4, 2014 at 9:21 PM

Sen Jerry Moran, KS junior senator, is heading the NRSC. He cannot have the embarrassment of Roberts losing, and they’ll get Roberts across the finish line

Another epic fail from the Rats. Couldn’t happen to more deserving bunch, and the Karma is long overdue.

The best thing for our nation is for the Democratic Party to suffer the worst midterm annihilation since 1946 and I think it is very possible

matthew8787 on September 4, 2014 at 9:23 PM

The independent in the race is a stalking horse for the Dems (as they typically are). His advisors? ALL Dems. Sure he’s not going to say he’ll caucus with them-not yet in a red state anyway-but Republican leaners need to stop being fooled by these charlatans.

Of course, Roberts should’ve retired along with Cochran…when you don’t even live in the state you supposedly represent anymore, it’s time to go. But, him losing also means Harry Reid stays majority leader, which isn’t exactly ideal.

changer1701 on September 4, 2014 at 9:25 PM

Does anybody else hope this loser wins?

anuts on September 4, 2014 at 9:30 PM

Mmmmmm . . . schadenfreude.

eMatters on September 4, 2014 at 9:37 PM

Anyone from KS know anything about the Libertarian, Randall Batson? I saw hew was polling single digits but how is he issues-wise? Maybe a worthy protest vote against Roberts, or does KS allow a grassroots writein to get Wolf?

AH_C on September 4, 2014 at 10:15 PM

Sorry AH_C, can’t give you any info on Batson. I feel Kansas is going to go with Roberts again. I did vote for Wolf in the primary and would like to see Roberts out but when it is all said and done there are those that support him and those that will hold their nose because the alternative is unacceptable. There will also be those that refuse to vote for him but I can’t see that number being enough for Roberts to lose. I have known Taylor for many years professionally and though I am a conservative I did vote for him when he ran for DA. I like him as do many of the people I work with. He has done a good job in his current position. But when it comes down to it that would not have been enough for me to vote for him for the Senate. This episode also casts him in a much different light, a more “establishment” Democrat than he has been viewed before so I would think the limited support he had been receiving will also dwindle.

Mouse1 on September 4, 2014 at 10:47 PM

Don’t know. Michelle Nunn looks to be poised for victory in Ga though.

Bmore on September 4, 2014 at 8:04 PM

Nate Silver and the 538 crew gives Nunn a 30% chance to pick the seat up. Not the best for her but far better than I would have thought.

Dawnsblood on September 4, 2014 at 11:07 PM

Kansas Supreme Court–out of seven justices, six were appointed by Sebelius. So if it winds up before the court, I’ll lay odds on Taylor being removed from the ballot.

First Republican Party ad will highlight Orman’s donations to Obama and Hillary! Most Kansas folk will flinch away and vote for Roberts. Even the very few of my acquaintances that admitted publicly to voting for BO say nothing in polite company these days.

kansaskaye on September 4, 2014 at 11:28 PM

To help seal the Senate, the GOP needs to point out that ALL Ds in the Senate did what they were told on BOs big pushes. They voted for BOcare when they knew their constituents disapproved of it and the slimey way it was ‘passed”.

So, if elected they will do BOs bidding on immigration, stacking the courts with prog. puke, harmful treaties . . .

ha_tspc on September 5, 2014 at 1:24 AM

Who wants to vote for someone with no principles? Some will, but I can’t see him winning.

cat_owner on September 4, 2014 at 7:58 PM

Democrats. They do it all of the time. Look at their nominee in Florida for Governor. Look at their President, Leader of the Senate, House Minority Leader, etc. They are all unprincipled and corrupt socialists. Democrats have no problem with this, obviously.

Theophile on September 5, 2014 at 2:42 AM

Exit answer: Because it’s the Haley Barbour way!

locomotivebreath1901 on September 5, 2014 at 6:01 AM

So the D’s are worried that the conditioned response D party line voter will… just vote a D party line in the Senate race?

This sounds like D’s indicting their own voters for not being all that intelligent.

ajacksonian on September 5, 2014 at 7:17 AM

I know the race is tight right now and presumably bound to get tighter if Taylor’s name is bumped off the ballot and Democrats consolidate behind Orman, but c’mon. It’s Kansas! They haven’t sent a non-Republican to the Senate since the 1930s.

After the mobilization to bring Dems to the polls to save Cochran’s befuddled hide in MS, I think the KS Dems may be quite capable of flipping all the party-line Dem voters to cast votes for the “indy” on the ballot. Certainly, it would be no surprise.

Anyone watching KS churches for bag men arriving with satchels of walking-around cash and cigarettes?

Toocon on September 5, 2014 at 8:10 AM

Trust me… the Dems will find some way to “change the law” or cheat the system in time to take the guy’s name off the ballot…

Trust me… I’m from Massachusetts … it happens here all the time.

RedManBlueState on September 5, 2014 at 9:29 AM

So the D’s are worried that the conditioned response D party line voter will… just vote a D party line in the Senate race?

This sounds like D’s indicting their own voters for not being all that intelligent.

ajacksonian on September 5, 2014 at 7:17 AM

The Free Sh*t Army ain’t known for their intellectual abilities.
You average Low Information Free Sh*t Voter is, in short, a dumbs*t.

As is Mr. Taylor here

Oh, they are D’s, which makes them all losers.

Bubba Redneck on September 5, 2014 at 9:46 AM

Trust me… the Dems will find some way to “change the law” or cheat the system in time to take the guy’s name off the ballot… – RedManBlueState at 9:29 AM

The KS Dems will facing off against KS SoS Kris Kobach who is not lacking in combativeness or Ivy League legal tricks of his own (summa cum laude in Government at Harvard, MA & PhD in Politics at Oxford, Yale law degree including Yale law journal). Kobach will pitch as hard as Kansas law allows.

I’d hoped that Kobach would challenge Roberts but he’s playing the patient game and standing in line until Roberts gets so senile that they make him retire. Given how senile McStain acted in Ukraine yesterday on his FNC interview, that won’t be any time soon.

The GOP really can’t afford to keep running these Beltway geezers that abandoned their home states decades ago. It’s self-defeating.

Toocon on September 5, 2014 at 10:59 AM

Didn’t McCaskill engineer his withdrawal from the race? Like she engineered Todd Aikin in Missouri. I certainly wouldn’t want to let her get away with her dirty tricks in this cycle too.

MaggiePoo on September 5, 2014 at 11:32 AM

Exit question: If I’m right that this is a slam dunk, how do you explain this?

Let’s put it in terms you’ll understand AP – both you and the NYT are liars for the DNC. Why do you expect them to be any different than you?

earlgrey on September 5, 2014 at 12:33 PM