Republicans' family feud for control of the Kansas Senate in the 2012 elections "will shape the arc of Gov. Sam Brownback's term," noted Kansas City Star columnist Steve Kraske. He suggested that as conservatives try to take control of the Senate from moderates and swing the chamber Brownback's way on issues such as tax rates and school finance, the two sides could spend far more than the $5.9 million spent on Senate races in 2008. "If you think all of this is abstract politics that doesn't affect your life, reach up and slap yourself right now," Kraske wrote. "For the next few years, everything happening in Topeka will affect you in the most personal of ways because of the sea change the Brownback administration is pursuing."