Ron M. Estes

A state panel ruled Monday that Ron Estes, the Wichita area congressman, will appear as “Rep. Ron Estes” on the primary ballot where he faces a challenger also named Ron Estes.

Secretary of State Kris Kobach’s office had previously decided to add the title, but a Democrat also running for the 4th Congressional District seat objected. Laura Lombard said state law bars including titles on the ballot.

“You really should not be able to use your title on the ballot,” Lombard said. “It’s an unfair advantage for the incumbent.”

Deborah Shaar / KMUW

A Democratic congressional candidate from Wichita is challenging how Kansas plans to distinguish on its primary ballot between two Republicans in the race with the same first and last names.

Democrat Laura Lombard filed an objection Monday to the secretary of state's plan to have the incumbent in the Wichita-area 4th District primary listed on the ballot as Rep. Ron Estes.

The congressman faces another Ron Estes from Wichita in the Aug. 7 primary. The challenger would be listed as Ron M. Estes.

Ascha Lee of KMUW/Courtesy photo

The race for the 4th Congressional District seat in south-central Kansas will include a Republican candidate named Ron Estes.

But we won’t know until after the August primary whether that candidate is current Congressman Ron Estes or political newcomer Ron Estes.