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Archive for Wednesday, November 3, 2004

GOP retains, strengthens hold on Kansas Legislature

November 3, 2004

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Republicans made gains in the Kansas Legislature, and speculation increased over the battle between conservative and moderate Republicans for leadership positions in the state Senate.

In the 40-member Senate, Republicans maintained their 30-10 advantage over Democrats.

But many observers said after Tuesday's election, the Senate appeared evenly split, 15-15, between conservative and moderate Republicans. Before the election, moderates had held a slight majority.

In the House, Republicans gained three seats to increase their command to 83-42 over Democrats. Leadership there is in conservative hands.

House Majority Leader Clay Aurand of Courtland said Republican gains represented a rebuff to Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, a Democrat.

"From personal appearances to mail and recorded phone calls, Kathleen Sebelius tried to move the Legislature to the left, but was unsuccessful," Aurand said.

Sebelius declined to respond to Aurand's comments.

In a statement, she said her job was to work with members of both parties "to provide affordable health care to working Kansas families, strengthen Kansas schools, and create jobs to sustain our economic recovery."

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