Antonio Soave, former Brownback cabinet secretary, announces bid for 2nd District

Antonio Soave

Antonio Soave, who served briefly as Gov. Sam Brownback’s commerce secretary, announced Thursday that he is jumping into the crowded Republican field for the 2nd District congressional race.

“After prayerful consideration with my family, and so much encouragement from the business community in the second district, I believe now is the time to put my experience to work for Kansas,” Soave said in a press release issued Thursday. “I know what it takes to grow jobs, both as a business owner, and from my experience as Secretary of Commerce, recruiting businesses to our state.”

Soave served as commerce secretary for about 19 months, from December 2015 to June of this year. Before that he was the founder and CEO of an international business transactions firm that helps companies with exporting their products.

During the 1980s, according to his press release, he worked as an intern in the Reagan White House in the Office of Public Liaison.

“We live in a world where tyrants have nuclear weapons capable of striking our homeland,” he said. “I have been working in foreign policy for three decades. I know what it takes to keep America safe.”

Soave joins a crowded field in the 2nd District GOP race. Other announced Republican candidates include state Sens. Steve Fitzgerald of Leavenworth and Caryn Tyson of Parker, Rep. Kevin Jones of Wellsville, and Basehor City Councilman Vernon Fields.

On the Democratic side, former House Minority Leader Paul Davis of Lawrence is running. He faces Kelly Standley of St. Paul in the August 2018 primary.