Remember, Sen. Pat Roberts is supposed to be the experienced, mainstream Republican in Kansas.
Incumbent Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS), who is facing an unexpectedly fierce challenge for re-election, warned Monday at a campaign stop that the United States is heading for "national socialism."
It's not clear whether Roberts intended to make a reference to Nazism or simply meant to invoke the run of the mill looming specter of socialism.
Let's pause here to offer a friendly reminder to politicians everywhere: If you don't know what "national socialism" means, don't use it in a sentence.
In this case, Roberts has left his home in Virginia to campaign in Kansas full time, and in remarks captured by American Bridge, the senator argued the "America that we love and cherish and honor will not be the same America for our kids and grandkids."
He added, "We have to change course because our country is heading for national socialism. That's not right. It's changing our culture. It's changing what we're all about."
One interpretation is that the senator believes the United States is heading towards Nazism. The other interpretation is that he believes that the United States -- complete with record-high corporate profits and a soaring stock market -- will soon have a system in which the public controls the means of production.
In other words, Pat Roberts, after spending more than three decades as an elected federal lawmaker, doesn't know what "national socialism" means. At the same time, he doesn't know what "socialism" means, either.
This isn't exactly the senator's finest hour.