Moderates – The state Republican Party seems to be suffering from a dearth of moderates. That is where a traditional Republican group, composed of former lawmakers, comes in. Traditional Republicans for Common Sense can’t stomach the ultraconservatism that has overtaken the state GOP, a malady punctuated by the election of Gov. Sam Brownback. Common Sense might not be the answer for a conservative political party that has allowed “special interest groups to gain control” in the state, according to the group’s brochure, but it’s a start. It should get Kansans talking and encourage thought on what this state needs to move forward – freely and fairly.
Common Core – It might be difficult to find a more futile political exercise than the U.S. House of Representatives’ repeated attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, but Kansas Republicans are trying. The state party’s central committee adopted a resolution denouncing Common Core, the standards adopted by Kansas and 44 other states to set reasonable benchmarks for K-12 public schools. There were multiple attempts to repeal Common Core in the last session, including a last-minute desperate pitch to derail the budget compromise. Democrats simply don’t have the numbers in Topeka to thwart such legislative nonsense; it took reasonable minds within the Republican Party to stop the anti-Common Core constituency.
Hays Daily News
Arts – Elimination of funding for the Kansas Arts Commission and the loss of that organization created a lot of angst in some quarters, but state officials deserve credit for listening to their constituents and creating a vehicle through which state funding can again be used to support and promote the arts in Kansas communities, especially small, rural communities that have difficulty finding private funding for projects that enhance the quality of life. As a result of the state renewing its financial support of the arts, the National Endowment for the Arts has announced it will provide matching funds of $560,000 to the Creative Arts Industries Commission for the federal fiscal year that begins Oct. 1. That the state and NEA are both back in the game is great news for the arts in Kansas.
Drought –Recent rainfall in the region was refreshing, as always. Yet the rain wasn’t nearly enough to cure the lingering pain of drought. Another reminder of as much came in a request from officials in Kansas to extend emergency haying and grazing on Conservation Reserve Program land. Years of drought have hindered farmers’ ability to produce hay or to provide forage and pasture for livestock. Allowing ranchers to continue accessing that forage could be the difference between maintaining a cow herd or facing liquidation.
Garden City Telegram
KU vs. Mizzou – The beat goes on and on: Resume the traditional Kansas-Missouri football game and hold the annual event in Kansas City’s Arrowhead Stadium. Almost from the moment University of Kansas officials announced they did not intend to continue one of the nation’s longest football rivalries, Kansas City, Mo., business interests started campaigning for a renewal of the game. If – and this is a huge if – there should be any degree, even the slightest degree, of talk or interest by KU officials about the possibility of renewing athletic competition between the Jayhawks and Tigers, it should be about games played on a home-and-home basis in Lawrence and Columbia rather than in Kansas City.