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Congressional Race In South Central Kansas Surprisingly Competitive

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Ron Estes and James Thompson. [KWCH photo] Ron Estes and James Thompson. [KWCH photo]
WICHITA, Kansas -

A Democratic civil rights attorney running in the nation's first congressional election since President Donald Trump's November victory has made the race surprisingly competitive for the House seat in Kansas' 4th congressional district.

The district includes the community of Sedan and all of Chautauqua County.

The special election Tuesday between Democrat James Thompson and Republican Ron Estes to fill the seat vacated by CIA Director Mike Pompeo is being watched across the nation for signs of a backlash against Republicans.

1/25/2017 Related Story: Former Kansas Congressman Mike Pompeo Sworn In As CIA Director

Trump won 60 percent of the votes cast in the congressional district that includes the state's largest city of Wichita.

But in a sign of nervousness, Republicans poured money into the race late to bolster Estes. 

Trump and Vice President Mike Pence recorded get-out-the-vote calls on his behalf and Senator Ted Cruz of Texas campaigned for him.

The three polling locations in Chautauqua County, Cedar Vale, Peru and Sedan are open until 7 p.m.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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