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End the duopoly

Tech billionaire Peter Thiel is searching for new political allies. He’s found one in Kansas.

Kris Kobach and Peter Thiel have struck an unlikely alliance. At his Park Avenue penthouse — 62 floors high and with a sparkling nighttime view of the Manhattan skyline — billionaire Peter Thiel last fall introduced to his friends an immigration hardliner who he would back with over $1 million to try and transform the Republican Party.

The guest of honor was not President Donald Trump. It was Kris Kobach.

Thiel, a California venture capitalist, and Kobach, who is running in Kansas for the Republican nomination for the US Senate, were quite far from Kansas that evening. But the alliance between the two iconoclasts has reshaped the race in that state, giving Kobach a puncher’s chance to beat the GOP establishment — and chancing Republicans’ hopes to hold their Senate majority along the way.

In the months since that fundraiser, Thiel has pumped $850,000 into a super PAC behind Kobach — and that could be just the start if he wins. The investment in Kobach is Thiel’s most significant political bet since he risked his standing in Silicon Valley to support Donald Trump in 2016. And the wisdom of that bet will be tested just next week, when Kobach faces the voters […]

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