A conservative Tea Party Republican was unseated by an “establishment” backed challenger Tuesday in the Kansas state GOP primary, dealing a significant blow to Congress' most conservative unit.
In a race where the outsider was the incumbent and the “establishment” was the challenger, Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS.) lost his primary bout with Dr. Roger Marshall, an OB/GYN.
Nearly two and a half hours after the polls closed in Kansas' 1st congressional district, Decision Desk HQ called the race for Marshall.
Huelskamp's loss in the Republican primary is the first of his party to not be at the hands of a new redistricting measure.
Further, it is among the first losses by one of the Republicans who rode the Tea Party wave in 2010 to a more traditional GOP candidate.
Huelskamp voted against the Farm Bill, angering many rural Kansans. Not backing the Farm Bill resulted in Huelskamp's opponent receiving the endorsements of Kansas Livestock Association, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and Kansas Farm Bureau.
And while Huelskamp received backing from conservative stalwarts such as Senators Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Rand Paul (R-KY), his campaign ultimately sunk. Internal polling from the Marshall campaign showed the race in a dead heat nearly a month out of the primary race.
But the actual results on the ground leaned heavily toward the challenger, with Huelskamp losing his coveted seat and removing a place in the conservative and powerful House Freedom Caucus.