Archive for Monday, November 23, 2009

Democrat Dennis Moore won’t seek re-election to Congress in 2010

November 23, 2009, 8:19 a.m. Updated November 23, 2009, 6:48 p.m.


Democrat Dennis Moore won't seek re-election to Congress in 2010

A decision by Rep. Dennis Moore, D-Kan., to not seek a seventh term in Congress opens up the only seat currently held by a Democrat. Enlarge video

A decision by Rep. Dennis Moore, D-Kan., to not seek a seventh term in Congress opens up the only seat currently held by a Democrat.

“It is time for a new generation of leadership to step forward,” Moore said in a statement on Monday announcing that he would not seek re-election from his district that includes eastern Lawrence.

Republicans said the move gave them hope that they can recapture the seat — after losing six elections to the former Johnson County district attorney. But Democrats indicated they could keep the district that also includes Wyandotte and Johnson counties.

“I’m very confident that we will have a great candidate, and it will be a good election cycle year for that candidate,” said Larry Gates, Kansas Democratic Party chairman. “Is it going to be Dennis Moore? No, because that’s not going to happen, but the district still, I think, leans Democratic. In 2008, it went for President Obama, and Dennis won by 17 points.”

Moore will not run for any other public office in 2010, Gates said.

GOP reaction

Republicans on Monday, including GOP chairwoman Amanda Adkins, criticized Moore for voting with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democratic leadership. Moore, a member of the fiscally conservative Democratic Blue Dog Coalition, did support a public option as part of H.R. 3962, the health care bill the House narrowly passed earlier this month.

His last opponent also said he was concerned about Moore’s recent support for legislation, including the cap-and-trade legislation, H.R. 2454, that passed the House in June.

“We were bantering back and forth,” said former state Sen. Nick Jordan, R-Shawnee, who lost to Moore in 2008. “The announcement (from Moore on Monday) pretty much changed the dynamics dramatically.”

Jordan said he was definitely running again. He will join an already-crowded GOP field. State Rep. Kevin Yoder, R-Overland Park, also on Monday announced an exploratory committee for a bid. So far, former Kansas Rep. Patricia Lightner, along with Daniel Gilyeat, John Rysavy and Tom Scherer were the only Republicans actively campaigning. Others could also jump in the race.

Moore’s decision, fallout

The decision not to ask voters to return him to Congress represents an apparent change of heart for Moore. Late last year, he dispelled rumors he was not running. He had continued to raise money through the end of September, but recently, Gates said, Moore, 64, talked with family and decided against another rigorous campaign.

“All of this talk about the fact that he was in some kind of trouble (politically), but no one seems to be lining up to take him on, although today they all piled in,” Gates said.

He said Moore was known as a hard worker and campaigner, known in bipartisan circles for his service to constituents.

Political pundits said Moore’s decision at least opens the door for the GOP, giving it the potential to capture all congressional seats in the state.

“I think it would have taken a real, real strong Republican with a lot of money to knock him off, and we hadn’t seen that yet,” said Bob Beatty, a Washburn University associate political science professor.

The National Republican Congressional Committee had ramped up its criticism of Moore in recent months. NRCC spokesman Tom Erickson said because Moore isn’t seeking re-election it proves Democrats will face an uphill battle in 2010.

But Democrats also disputed that notion.

“This is exactly the type of moderate suburban district Democrats have done well in over the past few cycles, and we are in a strong position to hold onto this seat,” said Gabby Adler, a spokeswoman for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

Moore in his statement called the current year the “most intense and busy of my tenure.”

Republican candidate forum

The Kansas University College Republicans will present a candidate forum for 3rd Congressional District candidates. It will be at 7 p.m. today in the Simons Media Room of the Dole Institute of Politics, 2350 Petefish Drive.

GOP candidates John Rysavy, Patricia Lightner, Daniel Gilyeat and Tom Scherer are scheduled to attend. Former state Sen. Nick Jordan said he cannot attend the event. State Rep. Kevin Yoder also is invited, but attempts to determine whether he would attend were unsuccessful.

“This has been the most exciting and frustrating job I have ever had,” Moore said. “Exciting because of the opportunities to do the right thing for our people, especially those who most need our support. Frustrating because of the strident partisanship which too often distracts Congress from squarely addressing the critical issues of our time.”

He will serve the remainder of his term that ends in January 2011.

Names of potential Democratic nominees also began to swirl Monday, and Amy Jordan Wooden, an adviser for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Tom Wiggans, of Olathe, said he would not drop out of the governor’s race to seek Moore’s seat.

Kansas House Minority Leader Paul Davis, a Lawrence attorney, said he was not really looking at the possibility of running for Congress.

Davis said Kansas City, Kan., Mayor Joe Reardon would be in position to run, and state Sen. Tom Holland, D-Baldwin City, might be a possibility as well.

“I think that is a district that ideally would like to vote for a moderate Democrat, and I think if we can field such a candidate, we’ve got a good opportunity to hold on to it,” Davis said.


puddleglum 7 years, 10 months ago


where's the shew-shew?

I read all about this on Fox news-digest!

the best NEWS source in the world, like u.s. has #1 health care in the world.... I hope phil Kline runs! he is tha bomb!

Go G.O.P. !!!!!! there is still hope yet for 2009 tea baggers birthers death panels sarah palins childish congressmen astro-turfers pro-insurance profiteers great white hopes nobel-naysayers opossum-eaters ft. hood bookstores LOVE IT YOU GUYS!

ksdivakat 7 years, 10 months ago

YEAHHHHH!!! Hes worthless anyway, and why is this breaking news? Didnt he say all along that he wasnt gonna rerun??

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 7 years, 10 months ago

Maybe this means he'll actually vote as a Democrat for the rest of his term.

WilburM 7 years, 10 months ago

In the next few hours there willbe a barrage of comments here, and many will disparage Dennis Moore. Dennis has worked hard for 12 years to represent the 3rd district, and judging from reelection figures, has satisfied a substantial majority of 3rd District constitutents. He's been a moderate Democrat, and has spend almost every weekend back in his district, talking with voters and addressing their concerns.
We can insert this retirement into the broad narrative of liberal/conservative, GOP/Democrat, right/left narratives, or we might just stop and think about how one person has worked 70 hour weeks, for the past 12 years to represent the citizens of the 3rd District. And we might just offer a bit of gratitude, rather than letting ideology and vitriol rule the day.

Serving in politics is a tough job, with a lot of abuse. It also means taking positions, representing your constituents, voting your mind, and absorbing the consequences. Not just carping from the sidelines.

getreal 7 years, 10 months ago

Congressman Moore has represented his district well. He has provided the best constituent services of any elected official in Kansas in the last 40 years. Hats off to him and his staff for working hard on behalf of all Kansans, even those who didn't vote for him.

It is no surprise that after receiving threats over the health care debate that he is ready to lead a normal life with his family.

Best wishes to the Congressman, his staff and family.

hail2oldku 7 years, 10 months ago

While Moore was able to vote as a moderate in the past in order to match the wishes of his constituents, he shifted further and further to the left with each re-election. His voting this past year has him so polar from those constituents that he's smart enough to realize the next run for re-election would have been extremely difficult.

It is unfortunate that Dennis sold out, both himself and his constituents, because he did start out serving his people instead of his party. Isn't that what all of our representatives are supposed to be doing?

douglas6280 7 years, 10 months ago

I am sure in his press release he will mention "the political climate" and the alleged threats (have there been any arrests yet?) he received, but what it comes down to is he ignored the wishes of his constituents on health care, cap and trade, and the failed stimulus package. I am sure this will be the end of the "Blue Dogs" as they lose or resign their seats in 2010.

WilburM 7 years, 10 months ago

There are various objective measure sto suggest that your overall point -- growing liberalization -- is not true, though it is true that being in the governing party does place demands on a legislator, which he or she must balance with his constituents' wishes. Still, the electoral evidence, which is the most powerful, suggests that he's done a good job of representing his constituents -- most recently in the 2008 election, when he defeated a well-qualified conservative by 16 percentage points.

Bob_Keeshan 7 years, 10 months ago

douglas6280 (Anonymous) says…

I am sure in his press release he will mention “the political climate” and the alleged threats (have there been any arrests yet?) he received,

And when he doesn't, how exactly will you atone for your certainty? With a public apology?

Or will you just "slink off in disgrace"?

RonBurgandy 7 years, 10 months ago

Well crap.

Thank you Dennis Moore for being a great Rep for my district. I'm sure I'm not looking forward to whoever replaces you.

ksdivakat 7 years, 10 months ago

Dennis Moore sucks as a politician, and you can spin it anyway you want, but 7 yrs ago we contacted his office over my mothers VA benefits and her Social security. The SSA had screwed her, and it wasnt her fault, she had all the paperwork to prove that she did what she was supposed to do. n that 7 yrs Moore never did a thing, we had several different people who were assigned to her "case" and never would get call backs, or letter responses. Now 7 yrs later, the overpayment is in collections to the tune of more than 5k, and so, Dennis Moore is worthless in my opinion, and glad to see him go, now I will try to find a republican senator who might be able to help us and see who gets this taken care of.

Richard Payton 7 years, 10 months ago

Congressman Moore did a good job and I personally want to thank him for a great job. Many in Congress will not send out emails explaining their positions Congressman Moore did. He fully explained his positions giving reasons why he voted or would vote for a bill then thanked his constituents. He would seek imput and provide surveys to gauge what constituent wanted. I can't say I always agreed with his vote but I appreciated his concern for his district. Congressman Moore supported the troops by making certain that the men or women that served would get a paid trip back to their families. These our the actions of a caring and great statesman.

Bobo Fleming 7 years, 10 months ago

Was getting a little smug. Now we will see if the yahoo rightwing and the moderates will destroy themselves again allowing another Dem to take the seat.

Steve Jacob 7 years, 10 months ago

I would LOVE if he ran for Senate. I doubt we are that lucky. He was going more left as time went on, but still liked the guy. Funny people are bringing up the health care issue, it has taken it's toll on the party, and will hurt come election time, but he was safe.

Brent Garner 7 years, 10 months ago

Hallelujah! Mr. Moore has become nothing more than a shil for the leftist/socialists/marxists. He purpoted to be a "blue dog" democrat but voted for the budget busting, deficit raising, job hurting, government controlling Pelosi healthcare plan. Good riddance to bad rubbish! Thank you God!

Steve Jacob 7 years, 10 months ago

And can i laugh at the LJW, that this is breaking news but was on the front page of the KC Star this morning?

sbell10 7 years, 10 months ago

I'm so glad that people have already suggested that he run for governor or the senate instead. Positive thinking, Kansans!

fairplay 7 years, 10 months ago

From the Washington Post:

"Dennis Moore has voted with a majority of his Democratic colleagues 97.3% of the time during the current Congress."

If you look back, his voting record has been pretty consistently far left. Those of you who call him a moderate or as the bozo on the short bus implies a right wing voter, from where do you draw your conclusions? Is it from his press releases that talk about "putting Kansans first" like EVERY OTHER POLITICIAN SAYS?

staff04 7 years, 10 months ago

"If you look back, his voting record has been pretty consistently far left."

To characterize a Democratic minority (until 2006) that moved further and further right (to the point that the right-of-center Blue Dogs ran as Democrats) shows an incredible ignorance of reality.

He supported the Bush tax cuts, voted for the Republican CAFTA bill, refused to endorse any legislation that wasn't paid for and didn't introduce legislation that wasn't paid for.

On second thought...yeah, that's pretty far left.

gccs14r 7 years, 10 months ago

It would be nice to have a real Democrat in for a change, rather than a watered-down Republican.

nbnozzy 7 years, 10 months ago


Bottom line is Dennis Moore has voted for this disastrous health care bill. Its a budget buster and he knows it. He also knows that he doesnt have a chance in hell in getting re-elected. I used to vote for the guy and I am a Republican. He's attempting to leave me and all other Kansans high and dry to pay for a very bad socialist health care plan. It's time he left the Congress. I will not support any candidate who is willing to sell out Americans on a bad bill.

Flap Doodle 7 years, 10 months ago

Astroturf and better drainage for Moore!

JoRight 7 years, 10 months ago

He's a line cutter anyways. He honestly cut in front of 3 of us @ a gas station. Hasn't had my vote since.

staff04 7 years, 10 months ago

nbnozzy, that's a fair enough criticism and I understand why you might be upset by his health care vote. Saying he's been consistently far-left, as fairplay did, isn't just wrong, it's stupid.

remember_username 7 years, 10 months ago

I don't blame him one bit. Why anyone would want that job in the current climate is beyond me.

tbaker 7 years, 10 months ago

So the congressman can read the polling data. Good for him.

haggisgirl 7 years, 10 months ago

I haven't always agreed with Dennis Moore, but I believe he has done his best to represent those that elected him. I hope this decision is because he's tired of the abuses and ungrateful constituents he has or that he's running for another office and not because of some illness or other issue in his family.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 10 months ago

I would love to see him run for governor and go up against Brownback. As far as being a Rep is concerned he was a helluva lot better than BB was a Senator.

leedavid 7 years, 10 months ago

He had to know his future in the congress was in trouble. With the economy the way it is and a vote on healthcare adding to the debit and funding opportunites for abortion.

Governor? Not soon. Any opponent could easily throw his congressional record on spending out there. With the economy in bad times for the next couple of years, it would be easy to make Dennis Moore and escape goat.

People are angry. They want to toss the bums out.

Bob_Keeshan 7 years, 10 months ago

leedavid (Anonymous) says…

Any opponent could easily throw his congressional record on spending out there

Dennis Moore has been in Congress since 1998, in the majority for 4 of his years.

Sam Brownback has been there since 1994, in the majority for 10 of his years.

Tell me, whose record on spending by the federal government should face more scrutiny? Dennis Moore has actually consistently voted against budgets, something Sam Brownback failed to do for all but two of the first twelve years of his tenure.

ralphralph 7 years, 10 months ago

Moore dodged the people during the last recess. I couldn't imagine how he thought he'd get re-elected if he didn't address their concerns. I guess he didn't intend to run again, so there you go. Moore had turned into an enemy of Johnson County, and even the wood-shingled crowd, who like to see themselves as progressive, would likely have noticed his fingers in their wallets before long. .... and a "line-cutter", you say. Hah! Good riddance.

yourworstnightmare 7 years, 10 months ago

Moore is a reasonable moderate and is what once passed for a republican in Kansas and the nation.

I encourage Mr. Moore to seek the governorship or a senate seat. If not Mr. Brownback's then certainly Mr. Roberts'. Pat Roberts has taken his for granted for too long.

yourworstnightmare 7 years, 10 months ago

Moore is not bowing out from fear of losing his seat.

It is the same song and dance from the right in every election. Moore is vulnerable, he doesn't represent his district, etc. Blah blah blah. Ask Kobach and Taff about Moore's vulnerability. They used the same rhetoric and found themselves without office.

He always wins going away, and in fact his margins have gotten stronger.

Moore has bigger fish to fry, and it scares the pea wadding out of the right.

pace 7 years, 10 months ago

I think the republicans are letting the crazy and violent speak for them. The republican party is becoming afraid to stand up to their own bullies.

leedavid 7 years, 10 months ago

Bob, Bob, Bob.....your deflicting. This is about Dennis Moore and the hideous spending of this administration. When it was a republican in the White House, Dennis looked good. Now.....horrible. It is the way of politics. He can see the writing on the wall. Why break his neck fundrasing for a campaign knowing unemployment will rise and they are working on health care, chasing the mysterious global warming...I mean climate change. LOL!

monkey_c 7 years, 10 months ago

Pace - I think the republicans are letting the crazy and violent speak for them. The republican party is becoming afraid to stand up to their own bullies.

Huh?? I'm intrigued

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 10 months ago

hail2oldku 8:59am "It is unfortunate that Dennis sold out, both himself and his constituents, because he did start out serving his people instead of his party. Isn't that what all of our representatives are supposed to be doing?"

Heh tell that to Dede Scozzafava who was chosen to be the Republican candidate by her own district and unseated by the RNP who replaced her with their own candidate (who then lost). Moore served his constituents a heckuva lot better that that!

leedavid 7 years, 10 months ago

Dennis Moore served what? Where are the jobs he promised? Education funding, where is that? Look through this entire thread and find one person listing one thing that Dennis Moore has done for Kansas. Are we better off with Dennis Moore....nope! We are worse off, much worse.

Jimo 7 years, 10 months ago

May Adam Taff can take the seat now that he's out.

justoneperson 7 years, 10 months ago

I hope Adam Taff doesn't end up in that seat...he was indicted for and pled guilty to "one count of wire fraud and one count of violating the Federal Elections Campaign Act"

Maddy Griffin 7 years, 10 months ago

I will miss you Congressman Moore! You are the only elected official that has EVER returned an e-mail or explained to me why you voted the way you did on numerous occasions. Thank you for making me feel like you appreciated my vote. I wish I could give you another.

IsItJustMe 7 years, 10 months ago

lots of Rs have already thrown their names into the race... any official Ds? Wonder if Tom Wiggans is kicking himself for not waiting a week or two? It's not too late to pull out of the race for governor and throw your hat in for Congress! Come on Tom!!!

notajayhawk 7 years, 10 months ago

srj (Anonymous) says…

"I would LOVE if he ran for Senate. I doubt we are that lucky."

I doubt the Republicans could be so lucky. Having Moore run would be even better for them than running unopposed.

For all you fawning Barackolytes who would say Adolph Hitler was a good congressman if he was a Democrat, did any of you hear his interview after the healthcare vote? He said he'd never even heard the price tag, and he "hoped" it would lower costs but only time would tell. And THAT is what you consider representing the people? What a bunch of sheep.

Stephen Roberts 7 years, 10 months ago

I am glad to see him go. Atleast I will o thave to see mailings addressed only to my wife (she is a registered Democract) on how things are going in Congress. At least when we get something from Roberts & Brownback, it is addressed to my family, not just me.

BigDog 7 years, 10 months ago

I have never been a supporter of Dennis Moore but I am not going to take shots at the man. Things will come out later as to why he is really not running. It would be classless to take shots at him.

leedavid 7 years, 10 months ago

Big Dog, I am taking shots at Dennis Moore. It is the quantity and quality of his work, not the man, we have concerns about. Should his health be poor or some other personal tragedy, he will be in our prayers, for those that do that anyway. No one wants ill to fall the man or his family.

Sharon Aikins 7 years, 10 months ago

I'm a registered republican but have voted for him and have been pleased with the job he has done for us.

As to ksdivakat, how hard is it to get SS if you have all you papers in order. It took me all of one phone interview that lasted less than an hour and mine was a complicated case due to couple of factors. It isn't up to our congressmen to hold the hand of each of us as we walk the path of SS. You have to deal with them no matter what. Something tells me that is you haven't been able to get this settled in 7 years it's time to hire an attorney or take another look at that paperwork. Sorry but this isn't the job of our representative,

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