Public radio station KCUR seems more than a little astonished that State Senator Steve Fitzgerald, a Republican from Leavenworth, would go “out of his way to link himself to President Donald Trump” in announcing his bid for Kansas’s 2nd District congressional seat at a Topeka rally.
Republican Lynn Jenkins has held the seat for the last five terms but will not run for a sixth. Basehor City Councilman Vernon Fields has also announced for the seat and reportedly State Sen. Caryn Tyson of Parker is eying the open seat as well. On the Democratic side former Kansas House Minority Leader Paul Davis is exploring the possibility of running after his failed campaign to unseat Gov. Sam Brownback in 2014.
KCUR’s Jim McLean expressed surprise that Fitzgerald would link himself to the president given Trump’s “free fall in national polls.” McLean does not define the phrase “free fall.” Just as well. In the week before the November election Reuters had Trump polling at 39 percent. Today, he polls at 40 percent. Fox News polled Trump at 44 percent in November and 44 percent today.
The use of “free fall’ is still another example of the media’s often fact free reporting on the Trump presidency. Despite an unprecedented savaging by the media, Trump has, if anything, tightened his hold on the Republican base, proof which are the four consecutive Republicans wins in the four special congressional elections.
Then too, in the 2016 election Trump beat Hillary Clinton in the 2nd District by 18 points. In 2012, Mitt Romney beat Barack Obama in that same district by only 13 points. Why would a Republican candidate even contemplate disowning the Trump agenda?
A former Army officer and Green Beret, Fitzgerald is not one to yield to media pressure. McClean described him accurately as an “outspoken, often blunt conservative.” Said Fitzgerald to the crowd at his Topeka announcement rally, “We do not need politicians who tell us what they think we want to hear rather than what we need to know. Politicians with big plans for themselves but have never been toe to toe with those who deny the right to life, who are eager to limit your 2nd Amendment and other rights, and who see your wallet as the answer to their government spending problems.”
Fitzgerald’s shocking comment came soon after. Said Fitzgerald, “My vision for the next Congress is the rapid accomplishment of that agenda that President Trump brought to us and we approved in the last election — a strong, free and prosperous America.”