Republican Sen. Pat Roberts touted his experience and his party ties during his first debate with a surprisingly strong independent campaign challenger for his seat.
Roberts went on the offensive against 45-year-old businessman Greg Orman from the outset of Saturday's debate at the Kansas State Fair in Hutchinson. The race has become surprisingly competitive and could affect the broader fight for control of the Senate.
The 78-year-old three-term senator said he's the only candidate with proven experience and the only one working against Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
Orman said he'll focus on solving problems, not partisan politics. Orman has promised to caucus with whatever party holds the majority.
Roberts has overhauled his campaign and the race was roiled this week by the Democrat's attempted withdrawal.
© Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.