KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Voters in Missouri decided the fate of Medicaid expansion while Kansas voters chose the two candidates who will vie for the U.S. Senate seat held by retiring Sen. Pat Roberts during Tuesday night’s primary elections.
Here’s a look at the biggest primary race results impacting the Kansas City metro.
Missouri on Tuesday became the 38th state to approve Medicaid expansion with the passage of Amendment 2.
The measure, which will expand Medicaid coverage to all adults ages 19 to 65 with an income of 133% of the federal poverty level or less, narrowly passed with 53% of the vote.
Supporters fought to put the proposal on the ballot after the state’s Republican-led Legislature rejected efforts to expand Medicaid eligibility for years. States were allowed to expand Medicaid coverage beginning Jan. 1, 2014, after passage of the Affordable Care Act four years earlier and subsequent legal challenges.
Twelve states, including Kansas, have not yet expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.
U.S. Senate in Kansas
Kansas Republicans nominated U.S. Rep. Roger Marshall for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by longtime Sen. Pat Roberts, who announced his retirement last year. Marshall will face Democrat Barbara Bollier, a physician and state senator from Johnson County, in the November general election.
Marshall defeated former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach in Tuesday’s primary after receiving support from GOP party establishment, who worried that Kobach’s polarizing policies could put the seat in jeopardy.
The crowded Republican field also included Johnson County businessman Bob Hamilton and former Kansas City Chiefs player Dave Lindstrom.
Bollier, who switched political affiliations in 2018, easily won the Democratic nomination.
Gov. Mike Parson will defend his seat against State Auditor Nicole Galloway in November after both won their primary races as expected.
While Parson has a clear advantage in a reliably conservative state, Galloway, the only Democrat in Missouri to hold a statewide office, has criticized the governor’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic and his approach to tamping down on violent crime across the state.
Kansas’ 2nd District
Incumbent Rep. Steve Watkins, who faced scrutiny after being charged with three felonies in connection with voting fraud, will not get a second term in Congress representing Kansas’ 2nd District.
Instead, Republican voters nominated Kansas State Treasurer Jake LaTurner for the seat. He will face Topeka Mayor Michelle De La Isla in November’s general election.
Allegations against Watkins stemmed from the 2019 Topeka City Council race, when Watkins allegedly used a UPS store as his home address to vote in a different council district. He later lied to investigators about voting in the election.
Watkins blamed a “clerical error” and his staff for the voting irregularities and called the prosecution political.
LaTurner originally filed to run for the U.S. Senate seat after Sen. Pat Roberts announced his retirement, but he suspended his campaign to focus on the U.S. House race because strategists feared Watkins could be vulnerable in a general election.
Kansas’ 3rd District
Cerner executive Amanda Adkins will challenge U.S. Rep. Sharice Davids in November after winning the Republican primary on Tuesday.
Adkins, a former chairwoman for the Kansas Republican Party, defeated four other candidates for the nomination.
Republicans hope Adkins can unseat Davids, who ousted Kevin Yoder during the 2018 election.
Davids ran unopposed in the Democratic primary.
Missouri congressional races
Incumbent U.S. Reps. Emanuel Cleaver II, Sam Graves and Vicky Hartzler cruised to primary victories Tuesday across the Kansas City area.
All three face challengers in November, though they will be heavy favorites in their races.
Missouri attorney general
Missouri voters chose a former federal prosecutor as the Democratic candidate to face off against Republican Attorney General Eric Schmitt in November.
St. Louis-area lawyer Rich Finneran defeated former assistant attorney general Elad Gross on Tuesday to get the nomination.
Finneran faces an uphill battle against Schmitt, who has considerably more name recognition and a record of winning statewide office.
Missouri lieutenant governor
Voters picked a former Kansas City councilwoman to be the Democratic nominee for Missouri lieutenant governor.
Canady defeated unsuccessful, one-time state House candidate Gregory Upchurch. She will look to unseat Republican Lt. Gov. Mike Kehoe, who won the GOP primary on Tuesday.
In Missouri, gubernatorial candidates don’t run on the same ticket as candidates for lieutenant governor.
Jackson County sheriff
Jackson County Sheriff Darryl Forté handily fought off a challenge from former Sheriff Mike Sharp in Tuesday’s primary, winning his first full term in the role.
Forté had touted himself as a “change agent” for the sheriff’s office following Sharp’s departure. The former sheriff resigned in 2018 amid allegations that he had given raises and other perks to a woman with whom he had a sexual relationship.
In his new term, Forté, the former Kansas City police chief, will be largely responsible for overseeing the new jail.
Wyandotte County DA
Mark Dupree held off a challenge from prosecutor Kristiane Bryant to win a second term as Wyandotte County district attorney.
Dupree won the Democratic primary with 54.5% of the vote and will not face a Republican challenger in the fall. His next term begins in January.
41 Action News is committed to providing comprehensive information on the 2020 primary and general elections with an emphasis on several key issues — the economy, the COVID-19 pandemic and race relations. Count on us to provide news and information to help you make an informed choice at the polls.