TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) -- Shawnee County District Attorney Chad Taylor made it official Monday - he is considering a run for U.S. Senate.
Taylor, a Democrat, announced that he has formed an exploratory committee to run for the seat currently held by Republican Pat Roberts. Taylor had confirmed Friday to 13 News that the announcement was forthcoming.
Taylor is in the middle of his second term as DA. He told 13 News that he was motivated to consider a run because of the extremism he sees in Washington politics. Taylor said that making decisions from one end of the spectrum or the other leave the majority of people who are in the middle out of the discussion. He called that "dangerous" and "disingenuous" to the people of the state.
Roberts' campaign manager Leroy Towns responded to Taylor's announcement, saying Roberts is a "tough, tested and trusted conservative who has unprecedented support for his work in every county of the state."
Towns added that Taylor is "inexperienced and unknown" and would continue "the failed liberal Democratic policies that have been soundly rejected numerous times by Kansas voters."
Taylor plans to conduct a statewide listening tour, then make a decision early next year. He says jobs are the top concern he is hearing from people. Asked about the attention paid to the Affordable Care Act, Taylor said people need to meet in the middle to develop workable solutions.
Taylor says he will use the same grassroots approach to getting his name out statewide as he did during his 2008 campaign to introduce himself to voters in Shawnee County. He said he will use his time wisely and focus on effective communication so that his obligations as DA do not suffer.
News release issued Monday by Chad Taylor:
Topeka, Kan.-- DA Chad Taylor has announced that his exploratory campaign for United States Senate has officially begun.
Today, on his fortieth birthday, Taylor said “I am proud to be a Kansan.
We have the people, talent, tenacity and character that are truly the core of this country. The people of Kansas aren’t the problem – the career politicians that represent us in Washington are the problem. If we continue to elect the same people repeatedly to represent us, why would we expect Washington to change? It’s time for Kansas to have an advocate, rather than an opponent, as our voice in the U.S. Senate.”
Taylor currently serves as the District Attorney for the Third Judicial District of Kansas (Shawnee County), where he was first elected in 2008 by almost sixty percent of the vote, and re-elected without opposition in 2012.
D.A. Taylor’s campaign plans include a series of listening tours across the state and a focus on feedback from all Kansans. When asked about his motivation to run for Senate, Taylor replied, “As an elected District Attorney, I am appalled by the behavior in Washington. A vote in the ballot box is essentially a vote of confidence that the person elected will do what is in our best interest. It causes me tremendous concern to see long time Beltway insiders putting their own political agenda ahead of doing what is right for the people of our state.
As a Democrat D.A., I work closely with Republican Chiefs of Police, Sheriffs, state legislators and community leaders. Not once have we ever filibustered about doing the right thing.
I’ve been asked repeatedly to consider running for statewide office; given the recent reprehensible behavior of Congress, the public support for this Senate campaign has become insistent.
I look forward to advocating for all Kansans as a United States Senator, but in order to do that, I want to hear directly from you – what are your priorities for our State? What needs to change first? Please join our conversation on Facebook at facebook.com/Taylor4Kansas or @TaylorForKansas on Twitter.
This is our opportunity to ensure that the rights and interests of Kansans are actually protected in DC. Let’s show Washington that this is our Kansas.“