Opinion Columns & Blogs

Opinion Columns & Blogs

For Kansas government to work, lawmakers must listen to voters

Kansans chose divided government in 2018, electing a Democratic governor and a conservative-tilting Republican Legislature. The facts: 57 percent of Kansas voters did not support Kris Kobach. And many Republicans in the legislature, including some noted conservatives, represent districts where most voters supported Laura Kelly. These Republicans who find themselves caught between their voters and their own politics offer a great test of how representative democracy works in Kansas.

Opinion Columns & Blogs

On Medicaid expansion, let’s start with the facts

Gov. Laura Kelly launched her tenure by selling false hope to rural Kansans. This is especially disappointing in light of her promise to set a new tone in the statehouse. To put it bluntly, Medicaid expansion will not solve the financial issues facing rural hospitals. Politics and special interests ensure that Medicaid expansion consistently is put forward as the only answer. But it’s simply not true.

Opinion Columns & Blogs

During School Choice Week, compare private and public schools successes

It is National School Choice Week, an opportune time to show how the results differ between Kansas private schools and public schools in the area of college/career readiness of low-income students. Results from the 2018 state assessments for each of five urban areas – Wichita, Kansas City, Dodge City, Salina, and Topeka – reveal a much higher percentage of private-school low-income students (those who qualify for free or reduced-price lunches) are considered college and career ready in both testing categories. In those same areas, private schools have a much lower rate of students considered below grade level. Furthermore, those same results hold when comparing to public schools statewide.

Opinion Columns & Blogs

When it comes to the windfall, there are lessons in the past

As the governor, a skilled legislative veteran, prepared to deliver Kansas’ State of the State address, the multiple demands for state funding loomed large. The Supreme Court had mandated substantial additional monies for a critical state function. The highway fund was scraping bottom, placing Kansas’ reputation for excellent roads at risk. Moreover, the governor faced the implications of federal tax laws changes, which provided the state with so-called windfall revenue at the expense of taxpayers.

Opinion Columns & Blogs

A farewell from Kansas Gov. Jeff Colyer

At the close of my term as your governor, I would like Kansans to know of my sincere gratitude for the time I have had to serve the people of this great state. I have always felt called to service, and the opportunity to do so as your governor has been one of the most fulfilling experiences of my life. It has been an honor to meet Kansans across our state and see the good they are doing.

Opinion Columns & Blogs

What’s the point of a carbon tax rebate?

The Irish government is proposing rebates to a carbon tax it recently imposed to households that comply with what it considers “low-carbon lifestyles.” The rebate, according to Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, might be in the form of a check, an increase in welfare benefits or a tax credit for people who live the way the government thinks they should.

Opinion Columns & Blogs

True public service makes a difference

Commitment and collaboration. These are the building blocks of public service. Lynn and I first learned their value in the rural communities of our youth. His service began in earnest with our local elementary school’s parent/teacher association, developed into an investment on the school board, led him to the state Senate, and now he has the honor of serving as the next lieutenant governor of Kansas.

Royals Brett Phillips looking to break bad habits and be productive

Kansas City Royals outfielder Brett Phillips realizes he needs to work on his offense, and get back to being the productive hitter he once was.