April 12, 2017
President Trump is already creating jobs -- in Congress! After promoting some members to high-profile jobs in the administration, a handful of unexpected seats have opened up in the U.S. House. Yesterday, in a special election to fill one of those vacancies, Kansas's Ron Estes (R) managed to become the newest member of Congress. It was an unexpectedly tight race for CIA Director Mike Pompeo's seat, thanks to the money pouring in from outside liberal groups who hoped -- and failed -- to flip the district blue.
A former businessman and Trump supporter, Estes carried on the Republican tradition in a seat that hasn't belonged to a Democrat since 1992. "We heard a lot from the national media and from people outside the state that we weren't going to be able to win this race. We showed tonight that we were," Estes said. "We're still a Republican seat. ... We sent a message across the country that we're still Republican. That message should echo." Although liberals came within seven points of victory, they were a longshot for a district that Trump carried by a whopping 27 percent.
FRC Action Director Brent Keilen said the race earned a lot of national attention since it was the first since the president was sworn in. Five more seats are empty after Trump appointments. For values voters, Brent explained, the Estes victory is a meaningful one. "On the campaign trail, Ron Estes engaged voters on issues they cared about like religious liberty, Obamacare repeal, and defending our constitutional freedoms. He also stated that protecting life and defunding Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider, would be top priorities if elected. His clear positions on these conservative issues put him over the top with Kansas voters, and we look forward to working with him in Washington, D.C."
Tony Perkins' Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.