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Governor Names Lawmaker as New State Treasurer

Associated Press - April 18, 2017 11:17 am

A top Democratic lawmaker says he is joining the crowded race to replace Republican Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback. House Minority Leader Jim Ward of Wichita announced his candidacy Saturday. He had named former Democratic Party chairman Lee Kinch as his campaign treasurer earlier this week.

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback has appointed a legislator as the next state treasurer to replace Republican Ron Estes after Estes won a special congressional election.

Brownback announced Tuesday that GOP state Sen. Jake LaTurner of Pittsburg will serve the rest of Estes’ four-year term as treasurer. LaTurner said he will seek a full term in 2018.

Twenty-nine-year-old LaTurner has been active in Republican politics in southeast Kansas for at least a decade. He previously served on congresswoman Lynn Jenkins’ staff, was elected to the Senate in 2012 and re-elected last year.

The 60-year-old Estes was elected last week to replace former congressman Mike Pompeo in the 4th District of south-central Kansas following Pompeo’s appointment as CIA director. Estes plans to leave the treasurer’s office next week.