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Morning Sun
  • Jenkins wins re-election, defeats Girard resident

  • In what was mostly a quiet race, incumbent Rep. Lynn Jenkins retained her seat in the U.S. House of Representatives serving Kansas’ 2nd District.

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  • In what was mostly a quiet race, incumbent Rep. Lynn Jenkins retained her seat in the U.S. House of Representatives serving Kansas’ 2nd District.
    With some votes still unaccounted for late Tuesday, the Topeka Republican led by nearly a 2-1 margin over her Democratic opponent, Girard’s Cheryl Hudspeth. Hudspeth and Jenkins also faced a challenge from Libertarian Robert Garrard, who had 5 percent of the votes tallied.
    “I think we are feeling like our message has been validated,” Jenkins said in an interview after speaking to a group of supporters.
    That message, she said, was voting against what she called any “bad legislation” that came up for a vote.
    Judging from the results of all national races, Jenkins said the voters sent their own message Tuesday.
    “I’m looking forward to a new direction in Washington,” she said.
    Before Jenkins’ election in 2008, the seat was held by Democrat Nancy Boyda.
    Both Jenkins and Hudspeth fended off primary challenges in August, with Jenkins besting Kansas Senator Dennis Pyle and Hudspeth emerging as the Democratic nominee over Overland Park’s Sean Tevis and Leavenworth’s Thomas Koch.
    Hudspeth said given the way she ran her race, she had no regrets.
    “I had a great time, I met a lot of fantastic people and we worked hard,” she said.
    Hudspeth said she did not accept any corporate donations for her campaign, instead relying mostly on volunteers and a grassroots effort to get her message out.
    “I spent about $15,000 — most of it went into my gas tank,” she said.
    Though her campaign ran on a much smaller scale compared to Jenkins’, she said she was happy with the roughly 30 percent of the vote she did receive. However, she said a tide of voters frustrated with the economy or other policies of the current federal administration certainly did not work in her favor.
    “All politics is national,” Hudspeth said. “It’s about the economy, it’s about people being frustrated.”
    Jenkins said she might have benefited somewhat from that same frustration. However, she also said she thought the positions she took on spending and policies like the national health care reform bill did not go unnoticed.
    “I think Kansans appreciate that I voted ‘no,’” she said. “I think they’re looking forward to the day I can say ‘yes,’” to policies like keeping the current Bush-era tax cuts in place and reigning in spending.
    Jenkins’ victory helped the Kansas Republicans sweep the state’s four U.S. House seats for the first time since 1996. In the 3rd Congressional District, state Rep. Kevin Yoder defeated Democrat Stephene Moore, wife of retiring six-term incumbent Dennis Moore. Republican state Sen. Tim Huelskamp beat Democrat Alan Jilka in the 1st District race to replace Republican Rep. Jerry Moran, who won the U.S. Senate race. Mike Pompeo defeated Democrat state Rep. Raj Goyle in the 4th District. He will replace Republican Rep. Todd Tiahrt, who lost the August primary for U.S. Senate to Moran.

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