The state of Kansas has not elected a Democrat to the U.S. Senate since 1932. Kansas's other Republican Senator Sam Brownback announced that he is retiring due to "self-imposed term limits," which meant Roberts became the senior Senator from Kansas in 2011. Brownback is currently serving as Governor of Kansas. It is considered one of the more Republican states in the U.S. The last time its electors went to a Democrat was the Presidential Election of 1964, when Lyndon Johnson carried the state over Barry Goldwater.
Roberts had announced ahead of the 1996 election that "I plan only to serve two terms in the U.S. Senate", but he broke that pledge in this election.