Milton Wolf, a 42-year-old radiologist from Leawood, Kan., who practices with Alliance Radiology's Shawnee Mission Division, has announced that he will challenge U.S. Senator Pat Roberts in the Republican primary in Kansas next year.
This is Wolf's first attempt to seek public office. A second cousin of President Barak Obama who identifies with the Tea Party platform of reducing government spending and regulation, he has become a blogger, newspaper columnist and a Fox News contributor in addition to his work as a radiologist.
According to his website, he was born and raised in Lyons, a small farming community in central Kansas. He earned his M.D. from the University of Kansas, and is a critic of ObamaCare and its effects on the practice of medicine. He is married and has two children.
He is challenging Senator Roberts, 77, the senior United States Senator from Kansas, for not being conservative enough for his home state. Even Senator Robert's recent call for the resignation of U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary (and fellow Kansan) Kathleen Sebelius did not come soon enough for Wolf. On his campaign website, he criticized Senator Roberts for having supported Sebelius' nomination in the first place.
“Kansans knew the disaster that Sebelius would be if she was put in charge of healthcare, because they saw first-hand the disaster she was when she was as Governor. Sadly Senator Roberts, who himself has been in congress for more than three decades, joined with the Washington insiders and other career politicians and decided to give her even more power that she used to ram through and then oversee the most disastrous government program in our lifetimes," he wrote.
Kansas has a large Republican majority and Senator Roberts has already won his seat three times by comfortable percentage. In 2002, he won 82% of the vote when the Democratic party did not even bother to run a candidate against him. Wolf's primary challenge for the seat may therefore be the most serious challenge Senator Roberts will face in the 2014 election.
Senator Roberts is a ranking member of the United States Senate Committee on Agriculture, a politically important position for rural Kansas that would be lost if Wolf replaces him. However, with several early October public opinion polls showing more than 80% of American disapprove of Congress at the moment, the registered Republican voters of Kansas may well opt to change their candidate in 2014, particularly if Senator Roberts is unable to point to any major Democratic concessions achieved by Republicans in the current Federal budget and U.S. Debt Ceiling fight.