Conservative Republicans fare well in northern Johnson County statehouse primaries

"The freedom of energy choice is being undermined in many areas around the country, with governments seeking to limit or prohibit the use of natural gas," said State Sen. Mike Thompson in his Capitol Update column. Above, Thompson in a file photo.

Republican voters strongly backed conservative candidates in Tuesday’s area statehouse primaries, appearing to oust three more moderate Republican legislators in the process.

With the unofficial final tally posted, District 11 Sen. John Skubal trailed challenger Kellie Warren 63%-35%. And in House District 20, incumbent Rep. Jan Kessinger trailed challenger Jane Dirks 56%-41%.

Both Skubal and Kessinger had broken with their party’s leadership on a handful of issues in recent years, including Medicaid expansion and abortion.

Warren, a conservative Republican, is in her first term in the Kansas House, having defeated moderate Republican Joy Koesten in the 2018 primary for the District 28 seat. Koesten went on to switch parties, and is now the Democratic nominee for Senate District 11, setting up a rematch of her campaign against Warren in 2018.

Dirks will face Democrat Mari-Lynn Poskin in November for the House District 20 seat.

In Senate District 10, former television meteorologist Mike Thompson, who was appointed to fill the remainder of Mary Pilcher-Cook’s term when she resigned, easily defeated Rep. Tom Cox for the Republican nomination by a margin of 72% to 27%. Thompson will face Shawnee City Councilmember Lindsey Constance in the general election race.

Results from key area races are below:

Kansas Senate/House Republicans

Kansas Senate District 10

  • Tom Cox: 27%
  • Mike Thompson (incumbent): 72%

Kansas Senate District 11

  • Kellie Warren: 63%
  • John Skubal (incumbent): 35%

Kansas House District 18

  • Cathy Gordon: 71%
  • Calvin Vandegrift: 21%

Kansas House District 20

  • Jan Kessinger (incumbent): 41%
  • Jane Dirks: 56%

Kansas Third Congressional District Republicans (Johnson County tally)

  • Amanda Adkins: 30%
  • Mike Beehler: 19%
  • Adrienne Vallejo Foster: 19%
  • Tom Love: 7%
  • Sara Hart Weir: 22%

Kansas State Board of Education Republicans (Johnson County tally)

  • Benjamin Hodge: 46%
  • David Krug: 42%

Kansas House Democrats

Kansas House District 22

  • Randen Smith: 13%
  • Lindsay Vaughn: 86%

Kansas House District 39

  • Les Lampe: 69%
  • Michael Bolton: 29%