Prairie Politics

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker wins Kansas GOP presidential straw poll

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker won the two presidential straw polls conducted by the Kansas Republican Party at its state convention in Topeka this weekend.

The party held two polls: one for state committee members and another that was open to all convention attendees for a $2 fee. Walker won both races, taking 83 of a possible 182 votes among the state committee members, about 46 percent, and 253 votes in the donation-based race, which put him four votes ahead of Ben Carson.

Walker, recently elected to his second term as governor, gained national attention during his first term for his fights against public employee unions over collective bargaining. He defeated a recall attempt in 2012.

Carson, a physician who has become known for his opposition to the Affordable Care Act, came in second in both races. He collected 46 votes among state committee members.

Rick Santorum, who won the Kansas caucus in 2012, was toward the bottom of the pack, taking only nine votes among committee members. He got four votes in the other poll.

Also at the convention, Sedgwick County Clerk Kelly Arnold was elected to another term as state party chair after the party’s sweep in statewide and federal races in November.

Reach Bryan Lowry at 785-296-3006 or Follow him on Twitter: @BryanLowry3.