Fighting for our ‘core principles’
With a Democrat as the next governor of Kansas and a Republican-controlled legislature, this would seem to be an opportunity for bipartisan cooperation in the Kansas statehouse . . . right after Kris Kobach tears up his NRA membership card.
Ultraconservatives quickly showed they had no interest in pursuing the middle ground when they successfully ousted Rep. Don Hineman (R-Dighton) as the House Majority Leader.
A political moderate, Hineman was far too critical of the fiscal irresponsibility demonstrated by the Brownback tax cuts. He’s been an ardent supporter of public education. And he dared to call the Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity (AFP) “political terrorists.”
Rep. Hineman simply refused to be a “go along to get along” lackey in the House.
Speaker of the House Ron Ryckman retained his leadership role, after which he offered a rather hollow pledge to “look for ways we can work with” Governor-elect Laura Kelly. But if Ryckman and ultraconservatives are incapable of working with centrist members of their own party the likelihood of finding middle ground with Kelly is even more remote.
Ryckman’s disconnect with the best interest of Kansans - and reality - was further exemplified when he declared, “A majority of the state still believes in core Republican principles.”
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