Archive for Monday, December 1, 2008

Lawrence legislators win leadership positions; Neufeld out as House speaker

December 1, 2008, 11:39 a.m. Updated December 1, 2008, 1:36 p.m.


Rep. Paul Davis

Rep. Paul Davis

Rep. Barbara Ballard

Rep. Barbara Ballard

Sen.-elect Tom Holland

Sen.-elect Tom Holland

Rep. Mike O’Neal

Rep. Mike O’Neal

The Lawrence legislative delegation gained clout Monday, winning leadership positions in preparation for what promises to be a session dominated by budget cuts.

State Rep. Paul Davis, D-Lawrence, was elected House Minority Leader. State Rep. Barbara Ballard held off a tough challenge and was re-elected chairwoman of the House Democratic caucus. And state Sen.-elect Tom Holland was elected agenda/caucus chairman among Senate Democrats.

With state revenues nose-diving, Davis said, “We want to try to protect education and social services and things that we’ve fought for for many years from massive budget cuts.”

Davis will replace Dennis McKinney of Greensburg, who was recently chosen by Gov. Kathleen Sebelius to become state treasurer.

In addition to a new Democratic leader in the House, the chamber will have a new speaker.

House Republicans ousted Melvin Neufeld, R-Ingalls, and elected Mike O’Neal, R-Hutchinson.

Davis said he had a “lot of respect” for O’Neal. “I hope that I can have a good working relationship with him,” he said.

Davis defeated state Rep. Bill Feuerborn, D-Garnett, for the top minority position, 29-18.

Ballard, who has been caucus chairwoman for eight years, faced a rush from state Rep. Josh Svaty, D-Ellsworth. But the caucus went with Ballard, 25-22. Ballard’s election then was approved by acclamation.

On the Senate side, the recently elected Holland was selected, without opposition, as agenda/caucus chairman for the Democrats. Senate Republicans hold a 31-9 advantage over Democrats.


situveux1 9 years, 4 months ago

“This is going to be a session about priorities,” Davis said. “We want to try to protect education and social services and things that we’ve fought for for many years from massive budget cuts,”AKA - Tax increases. Get ready.

WilburM 9 years, 4 months ago

Let's see. Large GOP majorities in both chambers, and pretty darn conservative in the House. You really think taxes will be raised?

Kathy Theis-Getto 9 years, 4 months ago

Paul is on the right track. Great guy who will do a great job!

1029 9 years, 4 months ago

As a greedy, human-hating conservative, I must agree that nothing, absolutely nothing, is as important as preventing any sort of tax increase. I'd rather see all of society crumble than to have to pay an extra $10-15 per year because of some tax increase. It's my money and I work hard for it. Especially for education--those kids don't work, they don't pay taxes, why should we pay for them to be educated? Give them a bible and teach them how to work hard and they'll be just fine. "Education" is nothing more than liberal propoganda that threatens our conservative ideology.And social services? Are we all blind to the fact that this is all part of a liberal plot to shift wealth and power from the hard-working white christian?

jayhawkbarrister 9 years, 4 months ago

1029: the Klan meeting was tonight and they called on a throwaway phone and said they missed you.

tunahelper 9 years, 4 months ago

if you want the current level of services the state provides, you have to raise taxes. You can betch that omaba will raise taxes, especially on the hard working middle class.

jayhawklawrence 9 years, 4 months ago

Finally some good news from the Kansas Republican party.Let's hope Mike O'Neal has more sense.

a_flock_of_jayhawks 9 years, 4 months ago

One can only hope that 1029's post was a fit of sarcasm.

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