'Big 1st' voters choose Marshall

Update, 8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018

Freshman Republican Rep. Roger Marshall has won re-election in his western Kansas congressional district.

Marshall easily prevailed in Tuesday's election over Democrat Alan LaPolice in the 1st District.

The district covers the western two-thirds of Kansas and is among the safest for the GOP in the nation. Republicans have represented western Kansas in Congress for more than 60 years.

Marshall is a Great Bend physician who won the seat with establishment GOP support in 2016 by ousting tea party Rep. Tim Huelskamp in the primary.

LaPolice was making his third run for the seat. He also lost to Marshall in the 2016 general election running as an independent candidate and unsuccessfully challenged Huelskamp in the GOP primary in 2014. He is an Army veteran who farms near Clyde.

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Kansas' First Congressional District, "the Big First" is a largely conservative district where issues impacting farmers are the top priority.

Tuesday, voters are deciding whether incumbent Roger Marshall should continue representing the district that sent him to Washington, D.C. in January 2017, or if it's time for new leadership from Democratic challenger Alan LaPolice.

Both are in agreement that rural Kansas and agricultural producers in the state deserve a boost and supportive legislation from Capitol Hill.

One topic of contention for LaPolice concerned a new farm bill and what needs to happen to get a new piece of legislation passed. At a forum last month, he criticized Marshall for failing to get a farm bill passed.

Marshall promised a fair piece of legislation for Kansas ag producers and says Democrats in the House need to come to the table and negotiate seriously to move forward.

Overall confidence in Marshall and his ability to lead representatives to a farm bill that will benefit rural Kansans appears to be the top issue concerning "Big First" voters.