While Barack Obama is lining up key endorsements from Colin Powell, major and local newspapers, and hundreds of thousands of small donors, it's worth watching the down-ticket races. Bob Geiger reviews Esquire Magazine's Endorsements. Geiger writes:

Perhaps no incumbent senator more deserves to be run out on a rail for enabling George W. Bush's shredding of our Constitution than Republican Pat Roberts. While serving for years as chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Roberts gave the White House free reign while providing zero Congressional oversight. Here's Esquire: "As then-chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Roberts steadfastly defended the CIA as clean on torture and the NSA as clean on wiretapping--and just as steadfastly dragged his feet on investigating prewar intelligence failures for the tawdriest of reasons: to protect the White House. His opponent, a moderate former congressman, will do better."

Vote for Jim Slattery.

Esquire endorses Republican Jim Moran in the Big First, and backs both Democratic incumbents. Dennis Moore is endorsed as an "Easy choice here: vague values-and-terrorists talk from the challenger versus bipartisan accomplishment by the incumbent." Nancy Boyda is described as "A successful executive and lifelong pro-choice Republican, Boyda switched parties in 2003 over opposition to the war but retains her antitax, pro-business leanings. Which leaves pro-choice, antitax, pro-business Republican Jenkins free to campaign on what, exactly--change?"

In Wichita, Esquire backs Donald Betts, a fantastic young state senator who has stood up against the war, against predatory lending, and for his community. Esquire writes that incumbent Republican Todd Tiahrt, "knee-deep in Abramoff and DeLay cash, deserves to be dumped for this sin alone. But let's keep things positive: His opponent is as accomplished a state legislator as you'll ever find."

Kansans should also watch out for the State Board of Education races. Chris Renner is looking to unseat wingnut creationist Kathy Martin, science supporters Paul Casanova and David Dennis are looking to take the seat formerly occupied by creationist loon Steve Abrams, Carolyn Campbell is working to keep creationist Bob Meissner from taking Bill Wagnon's old seat, Walt Chappell is working to keep Carol Rupe's old district from falling into the hands of creationist Dennis Hedke, and in suburban Kansas City, Sue Storm and Mary Ca Ralstin are competing to take over the for the irreplacable Sue Gamble.

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Thanks for the heads up on the State BOE. It is possible that a Democrat could be also a creationist and I wasn't sure which way to go there.

I still have problems with Moore voting for FISA.
Most of his other votes I have no problem with.
Nor do I have a problem with his responsiveness to my bitching.