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Kansas senator gets Tea Party challenger: Obama's cousin

Another Obama family member will be on the ballot next year — as a Tea Party challenger to Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts.
Bill Young
Representative Charles William \"Bill\" Young of Florida speaks to reporters after the House Intelligence Committee conducted a hearing on Benghazi with testimony by former US General David Petreaus, November 16, 2012, on Capitol HilWashington, DC.

Another Obama family member will be on the ballot next year — as a Tea Party challenger to Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts.

Radiologist Milton Wolf, a second cousin to the president, said Tuesday he will primary the longtime Republican senator, becoming the latest conservative hopeful to try to knock off a GOP incumbent ahead of the 2014 midterms.

“I am here today to take my stand for America. I’m here today to fight for our Constitution and the divinely-inspired American idea of individual liberty, limited government and free enterprise. I’m here today to reclaim the American Dream for all Kansans and all Americans,” Wolf said in a release.

An outspoken critic of Obama’s health care plan, the doctor-turned-conservative activist has appeared on Fox News and writes a conservative newspaper column.

According to the Kansas City Star, Wolf took direct shots at the state’s senior senator during his announcement in Overland Park, saying it was time for a change. In his press release, Wolf also touted Roberts’ own words, calling the GOP hopeful “very conservative”

“Senator Roberts, we’re here to tell you that it’s time for a change,” Wolf said, later arguing, “No one should be in the Congress for four decades.”

Wolf writes on his website that he and the president are second cousins–Obama’s grandmother Madelyn Dunham, who raised him and passed away just before the 2008 election, was Wolf’s mother’s cousin, and the two women were childhood friends in Wichita.

The veteran U.S. senator said last month that while he wasn’t worried about the primary, he would certainly take any campaign seriously.

“I’m not vulnerable,” he told Politico. “I’m in a very strong position. But I’m not taking anything lightly. Marines don’t do that. They take the hill.”

Roberts, currently the ranking Republican on the Senate Agriculture Committee and former Chairman of the Select Committee on Intelligence, was first elected to the House in 1980 and to the Senate in 1996. He was unopposed in the 2008 primary and easily won a third term in the general election and has been easily re-elected.

But that doesn’t mean that outside conservative groups itching to knock off GOP senators won’t get involved. Senate Conservatives Fund executive director told Politico last month that Roberts had “voted to raise the debt limit and to raise taxes on 80% of American families. That’s a tough pill to swallow. He also voted to confirm Kathleen Sebelius who was picked to push Obamacare through Congress and to implement the law.” And the Club for Growth pointed out that he has only a 73% lifetime rating on their scorecard.