Stanley likely to replace Armstrong on ballot for Bel Aire’s 85th House District

TOPEKA — It’s official. Rebecca Armstrong, a Democratic candidate for Bel Aire’s 85th House District, has been removed from the November ballot, the Secretary of State’s office confirmed Monday.

That paves the way for  retired school administrator and psychologist Barry Stanley, who lost to Armstrong 189 votes to 214 in the August primary,  to take her place and run against incumbent Republican Rep. Steve Brunk. But it will be up to precinct committee leaders to decide on Wednesday whether to officially install Stanley in the race.

Stanley said he doesn’t know of anyone else seeking the Democratic nomination.

Although he has been campaigning and trying to raise money, Stanley said he may be at a disadvantage.

“I’ve lost some significant time here,” he said. “There’s no way I can match Mr. Brunk with money, but I can perhaps match him with the people I meet and spreading the message that I think Kansas faces a very critical time.”

Stanley had raised $1,605 in the lead up to the primary. Brunk, who was first elected to the House in 2003, had $36,462 left to spend in his latest campaign finance filing.

Armstrong said she filed as a “placeholder” and didn’t campaign or attempt to raise significant money during the primary. She said she learned shortly after filing that Stanley, who she supports, had also filed. Armstrong said she likely won the primary with votes from women who tend to support other women on the ballot.

“When I won in the primary, it just made it more complicated,” she said.

Armstrong said she hopes that Stanley can become well-known by voters before the election in November.