KANSAS CITY, Kan., Nov. 6 (UPI) -- Two-term Rep. Dennis Moore, D-Kan., Tuesday night narrowly won re-election in Kansas' 3rd Congressional District.
In a region Republicans view as theirs, Moore captured 50 percent of the vote, beating out Republican challenger Adam Taff who took 47 percent. Two other candidates, Reform Party member Dawn Bly and Libertarian Douglas Martin, took 2 percent and 1 percent of the vote respectively.
Taff was a political moderate who was trying to retake the Kansas City-area congressional district for the GOP. He received significant support from the national GOP, which wanted to be able to put his seat in the Republican column.
But Moore is a former district attorney popular in the eastern Kansas district who has been able to defeat conservative Republican candidates in the past.
"The people know him, they know his record and what he stands for," said Jack Martin, a spokesman for Moore. "He has a history of public service. He was the prosecutor for 12 years and has served people well in Washington. There's no reason to change."
The hot-button issue of the campaign was Social Security, with each of the candidates pretty much following the party line -- Taff in favor of putting some of the money into private accounts and Moore saying, Congress "ought to give incentives to people in this country to save privately in addition to Social Security, not carve funds out of Social Security."
Moore sees himself more as an independent than a Democrat, siding with the administration on such issues as tax cuts and the "fast track" international trade bill.
Burdett Loomis, professor of political science at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, said Moore also likely benefited from Republican disenchantment with their gubernatorial candidate, Tim Shallenburger.