The Latest: Kelly pledges bipartisan team as Kansas governor

Republican Kris Kobach, from left to right, Libertarian Jeff Caldwell, independent Greg Orman, Democrat Laura Kelly and independent Rick Kloos participate in a gubernatorial debate at KWCH-TV, Tuesday, Oct. 9, 2018, in Wichita, Kan. (Dion Lefler/The Wichita Eagle via AP)

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The Latest on the Kansas governor’s race (all times local):

1:35 p.m.

Democratic candidate Laura Kelly is promising to appoint a bipartisan Cabinet is she’s elected Kansas governor.

Kelly made the pledge during a debate Tuesday in Wichita at a Kansas Association of Broadcasters convention.

She is a veteran state senator wooing moderate Republican voters in a dead-heat race against GOP nominee and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach.

Kelly has portrayed herself as a lawmaker who can work across party lines.

Kobach said he can work with Democrats on many issues even though he is a principled conservative. But he acknowledged that he will not bend on his opposition to abortion and support for gun rights.

Independent candidate and Kansas City-area businessman Greg Orman said his lack of ties to a party would be an advantage in working with legislators.

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1:10 p.m.

Independent candidate Greg Orman is stepping up his attacks on Democratic nominee Laura Kelly in the Kansas governor’s race.

Orman compared Kelly, a veteran state senator, to unpopular former Republican Gov. Sam Brownback during a debate Tuesday in Wichita at a Kansas Association of Broadcasters convention.

Orman is trailing well behind Kelly and Republican nominee Kris Kobach, the Kansas secretary of state. Kelly and Kobach are in a dead heat, and many Democrats view Orman as a possible spoiler helping Kobach.

Orman, a Kansas City-area businessman, touted his private-sector experience. He said Kelly is like Brownback in that he also was a longtime legislator before becoming governor.

Brownback was a U.S. senator before being elected governor in 2010. He resigned in January to take an ambassador’s post.

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12:39 p.m.

The dead-heat Kansas governor’s race has become a referendum on how a Republican experiment in slashing income taxes went awry.

Democrat Laura Kelly and Republican Kris Kobach are arguing over what lessons came from the budget misery that followed tax cuts in 2012 and 2013 and whether the state needs a do-over.

Kelly is a veteran state senator who supported a successful effort last year to repeal most of the tax cuts championed by former GOP Gov. Sam Brownback. She argues that Kobach wants to bring back Brownback’s fiscal experiment and even top it.

Kobach, the Kansas secretary of state, wants to return to cutting taxes but bristles at being described as another Brownback. He says he would avoid Brownback’s mistakes by being more aggressive about controlling spending.

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