Two Democrats line up to challenge Sloan in 45th District Kansas House race

Two Democrats from Lecompton have lined up to challenge longtime incumbent Rep. Tom Sloan in the 45th District House race next year.

Aidan Loveland Koster, 37, formally announced her candidacy on Thursday. A native of Lawrence, she is a graduate of the University of Kansas School of Law and public administration master’s program.

She joins Terry Manies, 50, also of Lecompton, in what is now a Democratic primary race in the 45th District. Manies ran unsuccessfully against Sloan in 2016.

“I look forward to using my experience to help get our economy moving once again and to provide for and protect our public schools and our foster children,” Loveland Koster said in a news release.

Sloan, 71, from Lawrence, is a moderate Republican who is currently serving his 12th term in the Legislature. In an email, Sloan said he will announce his plans for re-election during the Legislature’s break in April next year.

“Both women will have to work hard to fault my record,” he said. “If I was not vulnerable when Hillary was soundly defeating Trump among the 45th District’s voters in 2016, attacking the Brownback administration after he has moved to D.C. is unlikely to unseat me.”

In 2016, Sloan defeated Manies, 55-45 percent, in a district in which Democrat Hillary Clinton received 59 percent of the vote in the presidential race.