Archive for Monday, August 6, 2012

New districts, photo ID, GOP warfare await voters

August 6, 2012


When Kansans vote Tuesday they will deal with different districts, a new requirement to provide photo identification and the smoke from Republican Party warfare.

Officials are predicting a low turnout at the polls, which will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

In the Republican Party primary, Gov. Sam Brownback, the Kansas Chamber of Commerce, the billionaire Koch brothers, and Kansans for Life have been working to defeat a group of Republican senators who they say have been obstacles to their agenda.

Brownback said he got involved "because of the alliance in the state Senate between Democrats and some Republicans that join together to promote a Democrat agenda."

House Minority Leader Paul Davis of Lawrence said when he read that statement from Brownback he thought it was peculiar. "Do the people of Kansas want their representatives to work with each other or not? I believe the answer is a clear yes."

Meanwhile, those Republican incumbents were battling back with the support of teachers, bi-partisan union PACs and gaming interests.

"The moderates have really fought back in a more aggressive fashion than I think some of us who have been watching Kansas politics had anticipated," said Burdett Loomis, a political science professor at Kansas University.

"The moderates aren't going down without a fight," said Washburn University political science professor Bob Beatty. "It's a true battle. It's not like the U.S. men playing Nigeria in basketball."

While GOP state legislative races have dominated politics in much of Kansas, Douglas County is part of a Democratic primary for the 2nd Congressional District.

Lawrence and Douglas County had been split the previous 10 years between the 2nd and 3rd Districts, but redistricting brought the county entirely into the 2nd.

Scott Barnhart, Robert Eye and Tobias Schlingensiepen are vying for the Democratic nomination to face U.S. Rep. Lynn Jenkins, R-Topeka, who is seeking her third two-year term.

Barnhart is a farmer from Ottawa; Eye, an attorney from Lawrence; and Schlingensiepen, a pastor from Topeka.

Eye and Schlingensiepen have had the most active campaigns.

Back on the legislative side, two Republicans are vying for their party's nod in the 3rd Senate District. James C. "J.C." Tellefson, a former Leavenworth County commissioner, faces Anthony Brown, a state representative from Eudora. The winner will go against incumbent state Sen. Tom Holland, D-Baldwin City, in the November general election.

The newly drawn 3rd Senate District covers parts of Leavenworth and Douglas counties, including Basehor, Tonganoxie, Eudora, Baldwin City and about one-third of Lawrence’s population.

In the GOP primary in Senate District 19, two newcomers face off: Matthew Windheuser of Lawrence and Casey Moore of Topeka. The winner will face state Sen. Anthony Hensley, D-Topeka, in the district that covers western Douglas County, east Topeka and all of Osage County.

In Senate District 2, Ronald Ellis of Meriden faces Jeremy Pierce of Lawrence, but Pierce ended his campaign and threw his support behind Ellis, who is expected to challenge state Sen. Marci Francisco, D-Lawrence.

Lawrence state Reps. Barbara Ballard and Paul Davis, both Democrats, and Tom Sloan, a Republican, face no primary opponents.

Republican primaries are being held in two House districts that include portions of Douglas County.

State Rep. Connie O'Brien, of Tonganoxie, faces Sandra Bohne of Leavenworth in the 42nd House District; and Debra "Debbi" Childers of Auburn, Ken Corbet of Topeka, and Dana Webber of Scranton are running in the 54th House District. The winner in that race will face state Rep. Ann Mah, D-Topeka.

The newly aligned districts were ordered by a panel of three federal judges in June, producing massive changes in voters' political representation. The primary also will be the first statewide test of the Kansas law that requires photo ID to vote.

Critics of the law say it will suppress voting rights and cause confusion. Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, a national proponent of voter ID laws, predicted it won't cause any problems.


prospector 1 year, 8 months ago

"Moreover, the practice of yellow journalism involved sensationalism, distorted stories, and misleading images for the sole purpose of boosting newspaper sales and exciting public opinion." Sage

"You may want to come up with a better definition, because Fox News is by far and away the most watched news in the United States." Sage

You can suck and blow at the same time I see. Just like all that phone hacking the Fox company has done.


donttreadonme 1 year, 8 months ago

And I don't even like the Democrats, as they are just corporate centrists. As opposed to the GOP being corporate shills. That's your choice.


donttreadonme 1 year, 8 months ago

"SageonPage47 minutes ago

Have any proof, or are you following 'The Party' line that if you tell a lie often and long enough that sheeple will believe it? Marxists are liars because they believe the end justifies the means."

If you believe that the Democrats are "Marxists", then it proves that FoxNews and the GOP have done a good job on you. You ought to turn off the TV and Internet and crack a history book, unless willful ignorance is your goal.


donttreadonme 1 year, 8 months ago

"rtwngr2 hours, 37 minutes ago Oh sure. Like standing in front of a polling place, brandishing a club, and making intimidating remarks on national television..."

Nice strawman. And a credit to the rightwing echo chamber that you are still working that old New Black Panther story. Never have two black guys scared so many white men.

Weak. Like GOP ethics.


jafs 1 year, 8 months ago

Wow, somebody came back, and made it less than half the morning before they got disappeared again, huh?


FalseHopeNoChange 1 year, 8 months ago

Even though Genies do not 'think' they can vote. I think Genies can vote 'if' someone helps them.


verity 1 year, 8 months ago

All this worry, sound and fury about rampant voter fraud. Much ado, time, energy and money spent to make sure that no one votes illegally. No proof constitutes proof that it's happening.

And yet, nary a whisper about Diebold, voting machines with no paper trail (that would be too difficult, costly, and well nigh impossible), programmed so that they can be hacked to flip votes. No comments about what party this company supports.


prospector 1 year, 8 months ago

"marxist yellow journalism " Sage

Somebody did not listen in History class. I see where you are coming from so lots of luck with that. Enjoying the voices?


consumer1 1 year, 8 months ago

Gee! No left wing nut job attempt to incite controversey in this story!!!! What a weak attempt at calling this a news paper. I also walked in showed Id and voted. That easy.


StirrrThePot 1 year, 8 months ago

I walked in, presented my KS DL, and voted. Get out there and make yours count, Kansans!


Matthew Herbert 1 year, 8 months ago

I had to show i.d to get a library card. Just sayin....


just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 1 year, 8 months ago

In the rightwing wackosphere, a balanced and accurate report (such as this one) is considered "biased" simply because it lacks the regurgitation of propaganda they've been conditioned to expect on Fox News, Rush, etc.


deec 1 year, 8 months ago

What specific word choices or phrases lead all these people to think this story is biased?

How about addressing the topic of the story rather than making unsubstantiated attacks on the reporter?

Or is the problem just that the reporter whose beat is politics and state government actually reports the doings of the politicians?


SageonPage 1 year, 8 months ago

Are there no adult editors at LJW? Why do we pretend this is 'The Daily Kansan' where marxist yellow journalism is encouraged and just let them run free? Hire an adult Editor please, let's resemble somewhat of a journalistic approach.


Armstrong 1 year, 8 months ago

@rvjayhawk, you're mighty generous today with the comparison. Rothy has made a living spewing the left side of life and passing that off as journalism.


Steve Bunch 1 year, 8 months ago

The majority of these comments confirm that we live in a moronocracy.


Milton Bland 1 year, 8 months ago

Why is this editorial not on the editorial page? Rothschild is in the gutter with Harry Reid!


Michael LoBurgio 1 year, 8 months ago

Kansas’ day of political reckoning is Tuesday.

Primary voters will determine whether Gov. Sam Brownback gets a Legislature willing to cooperate fully with his draconian social and fiscal agendas.

The House is there already. Only two or three votes in the Senate stand in the way. That’s why Brownback and his allies, which include the Kansas Chamber of Commerce and the wealthy Koch family in Wichita, are pulling out all the stops to purge the Senate of moderate Republicans.

Kansas will be a meaner and poorer state if voters allow that to happen.

Here is some of what is at stake in this election:

• The shape of public education. Brownback and the Legislature have cut deeply from the operating budgets of public school districts already.That all plays into Brownback’s small-government philosophy. Kansas needs legislators who understand what quality school districts mean to families and communities and are willing to protect them.

• Separation of powers. Not content with just legislative cooperation, Brownback wants the governor to also be able to hand-pick the state’s judiciary.

• Taxes and services. Brownback signed a crippling income tax cut into law this year and is likely not finished. His philosophical allies are pushing for a “taxpayer bill of rights” that would cap spending and require voter approval of any tax increases. That would impair the state from adequately funding schools or whittling down its disgracefully long waiting lists for disabled citizens needing services. College tuition would also be expected to increase.

• Sales and property taxes. Fewer dollars at the state level would put pressure on city and county governments to maintain their levels of services by increasing taxes on purchases and on property values. Brownback also wants to give school districts permission to seek unlimited tax proposals from voters. All of this creates a wider gap between wealthy and less affluent communities and school districts.

• Choice. Brownback has made it clear he will sign any bill limiting a woman’s right to an abortion, whether or not it is constitutional. His intrusions don’t stop there. On another front, the governor intends to turn all of the state’s Medicaid program over to private managed care companies, including long-term services for developmentally disabled citizens. Understandably, that group is deeply worried about receiving poorer care and fewer options. Brownback sincerely believes in diminishing government and in stamping his religious values into public policy. We think Kansas has too proud, too compassionate and too independent a heritage to allow itself to be turned into a test lab for those radical principles.


commonsenseanyone 1 year, 8 months ago

Yes, because asking people to have ID to show who they are is just crazy....


rtwngr 1 year, 8 months ago

Scott Rothschild is the definition of "Yellow Journalism!"


maggielou 1 year, 8 months ago

Anything from Glenn Beck is infinitely better than the constant editorializing disguised as reporting from Scott Rothschild.


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