Wink Hartman announces run for Kansas governor

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WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) -

The 2018 race for Kansas Governor officially began Wednesday, when a Wichita-area businessman announced he was running.

Wink Hartman posted a two-minute YouTube video, comparing himself with President Trump as someone "hard-working Americans" can support who's not a "career politician."

Hartman seemed to refer to Gov. Sam Brownback's "experiment" in economics when he said in the video, "It's time to put the chemistry set back in the closet.

"The spirit of innovation has been dampened by dysfunctions in government," Hartman added.

Hartman owns Hartman Oil, which was founded by his grandfather, and Hartman Arena in Park City. He also controls a Kansas banking company and several restaurant chains. Hartman ran for Congress in 2010 as a "Tea Party Conservative" and political outsider, but lost in the Republican Primary to Mike Pompeo. 

One other Republican has announced he's exploring a campaign for governor. Former State Rep. Ed O'Malley of Johnson County made that announcement in mid-January.

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