Roberts not the answer

In September, my wife and I attended the Kansas State Fair for the first time in more than 40 years. The main attraction for us was the debate between Paul Davis and Gov. Sam Brownback. Following that, Greg Orman and Pat Roberts took the stage, so we stayed to listen.

Initially, we concluded no matter how he claims to have satisfied residency requirements for a U.S. senator, Roberts does not live here. Roberts said he had visited his "home" in Dodge City (a bed he rents from a friend) seven times in the last year. Actually, Roberts owns a home in Alexandria, Va., he claims as his "personal residence" on other legal documents.

Roberts repeatedly pointed to his work on the Senate Agriculture Committee and suggested he is some sort of "father agriculture" responsible for almost anything that gets done in Washington for farmers. In fact, Roberts never even showed up for almost two-thirds of the ag committee meetings since 2010. A job record like that won't get the average person past the first week of employment, definitely not on a farm.

To further project the paternal image, Roberts also claimed to be the "father" of the National Bio and Agro Defense Facility at Kansas State University in Manhattan. Yet, when it came time to fund the project, Roberts was so consumed by his hatred for Harry Reid, he voted against a bill that contained $400 million in funding for the project.

The positive aspect of Roberts' record in the Senate is he is actually on the ag committee. At least Roberts wasn't removed by his own party leaders as was his counterpart in the House, Rep. Tim Huelskamp. But maybe he should have been removed for lack of interest.

Kansas needs a senator, not an absentee "father" in Washington.

Kenny Riffel,