KANSAS CITY, Mo. — U.S. Senate candidate Dave Lindstrom fired back on Tuesday after a top Republican official in Kansas called on him to drop out of the race.
In a news release from his campaign, the former Johnson County commissioner said he was “blindsided” by the actions of Kansas Republican Party Chairman Mike Kuckelman, who on Thursday wrote to Lindstrom and Kansas Senate President Susan Wagle to say they should exit the race, partly because of weak fundraising.
The letters from Kuckelman were obtained and first reported by the Kansas City Star.
“That kind of behavior from someone who is supposed to be the leader of our party is unacceptable,” Lindstrom said in the news release. “He is removing the Constitutional right of the people of Kansas to select their next U.S. Senator.”
On the Pete Mundo Morning Show on KCMO-AM on Tuesday, Lindstrom said that he was calling for Kuckelman’s resignation.
“His actions are not what Republicans expect from their leaders,” Lindstrom said in the release.
— Pete Mundo (@PeteMundo) April 28, 2020
Lindstrom wasn’t the only candidate to publicly denounce Kuckelman over the letters. Former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, also running for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Pat Roberts, called Kuckelman’s actions “inappropriate.”
“Grassroots Republicans should be outraged. Our next Senator will be chosen by the people of Kansas — not the party elites,” Kobach said in a tweet last week. “The Chairman's attempted intervention into the GOP primary is inappropriate. And his reasoning is questionable at best.”
Kansas Republican Rep. Roger Marshall also is running in the Senate race. Republicans have expressed concerns that a crowded primary field could split the vote and allow Kobach, a polarizing conservative, to emerge as the Republican candidate, according to a report from The Hill.
State Sen. Barbara Bollier is expected to win the Democratic nomination in the race.