While incumbents Pat Roberts and Sam Brownback have shared stages with countless celebrity Republicans this fall, their opponents have campaigned like lone wolves. U.S. Senate candidate Greg Orman’s stated independence rules out most associations with established politicians. Because Democratic gubernatorial candidate Paul Davis is trying to appeal to independents and moderate Republicans, he doesn’t need to be seen with party stars such as the Clintons or Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren or the unpopular president – though the GOP is making the last link in TV ads. Still, it’s remarkable that a Democrat has gotten himself within striking position of Cedar Crest with no (public) assist from Kathleen Sebelius, who twice won the governorship and had a 70 percent approval rating in 2007. (Of course, that was before she became secretary of health and human services and an architect of the Affordable Care Act.) But the Sebelius-founded Bluestem political action committee has been active this season, raising $641,500 from labor unions in just the past three months. – Rhonda Holman
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