Senate 18th District: Barta Cries Foul While Kelly Says All Is Fair

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TOPEKA, KAN. (WIBW)-The race for the 18th State Senate District has Republican Dick Barta calling foul play on Democrat incumbent Laura Kelly.

Dick Barta says incumbent Laura Kelly's ads are flat out wrong, but Kelly says they give the voters a distinct view of the two candidates differences.

Former Shawnee County Sheriff and Republican Dick Barta says Kansans deserve better than Laura Kellys recent ad campaign.

Barta says, "It's a smear campaign, it's absolutely wrong and the people should know the truth."

Laura Kelly says the campaign is truthful and just lays out the facts. She says, "It lays out his background and my background and shows that the two of us are distinctly different on a number of issues."

Republicans are eyeing the 18th Senate seat as a key race and Governor Brownback has leant his support. Kelly says she always campaigns like the underdog and recent finance reports published show she has spent $194,000 campaigning...dwarfing Barta's expenditures of $62,000.

We knew we would be a target and we raised the money and ran an aggressive and thorough campaign.

Thursday afternoon, Barta challenged Kelly to a live debate. WIBW Radio Interim News Director Shawn Wheat tells us Barta has agreed to let them host it at 5pm Sunday. We have not heard if Senator Kelly has accepted the invitation.