Archive for Thursday, August 24, 2017

In Lawrence, Jenkins vents frustration with Congress, shares opinion of Trump

U.S. Rep. Lynn Jenkins addresses the Jayhawk Rotary Club in Lawrence on Thursday, Aug. 24, 2017, saying she's leaving Congress after this term out of frustration over bitter partisanship in Washington.

U.S. Rep. Lynn Jenkins addresses the Jayhawk Rotary Club in Lawrence on Thursday, Aug. 24, 2017, saying she's leaving Congress after this term out of frustration over bitter partisanship in Washington.

August 24, 2017

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U.S. Rep. Lynn Jenkins told a Lawrence audience Thursday that she is thoroughly frustrated with the partisan gridlock in Washington, and that is one of the reasons she will not seek re-election in 2018.

"Did I mention that this is my last term?" Jenkins said when asked whether Congress will ever get over its partisan wrangling. "I have never been so frustrated in my life."

Jenkins, a Topeka Republican, is serving her fifth term in the U.S. House. Although she was widely viewed as a potential candidate for governor next year, she surprised the Kansas political world in January by saying that she would not seek any public office next year, but instead would return to the private sector.

Speaking in downtown Lawrence to the Jayhawk Rotary Club, Jenkins said voters themselves bear some responsibility.

U.S. Rep. Lynn Jenkins addresses the Jayhawk Rotary Club in Lawrence on Thursday, Aug. 24, 2017, saying she's leaving Congress after this term out of frustration over bitter partisanship in Washington.

U.S. Rep. Lynn Jenkins addresses the Jayhawk Rotary Club in Lawrence on Thursday, Aug. 24, 2017, saying she's leaving Congress after this term out of frustration over bitter partisanship in Washington.

"Bob Dole is a good friend of mine and a mentor. I talk to him regularly," she said. "And he tells about a day when members of Congress moved their families to Washington. Their kids went to school together. They went to church together, they socialized together and they got to know each other as human beings, not as the majority or minority party. And you know what? It kind of worked. They could find some common ground.

"Those days are gone," she said. "No one wants to move their family to Washington because the constituencies will think you’ve gone Washington. They want to see me walking on Mass Street.

"They want to see me in church on Sunday, buying gas where you all buy gas. People expect that now, and so nobody is moving their family to Washington," Jenkins continued. "We get to see each other four days a week and we’re going 100 miles an hour and we don’t get to know each other."

Jenkins noted that she was one of the founding members of a bipartisan group known as the "No Labels" conference that was seeking to blunt what members referred to as "extremism" in both parties.

And she believed that group was starting to make progress.

"But I will tell you, just recently, that has kind of disintegrated because, once again, the minority party — I have good friends in the minority party in the House — they’ve been instructed, under no circumstance will they help Republicans govern right now because they see an opportunity to get the gavels back after the next election cycle," Jenkins said.

Jenkins made no mention of the often-quoted remark by Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky in 2010, midway through Democratic President Barack Obama's first term, when he said, "Our top political priority over the next two years should be to deny President Obama a second term."

Jenkins also defended President Donald J. Trump, whom she pointedly criticized last week for his comments following violence at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., that left three people dead and many more injured.

"Look, he was not my pick of the litter," said Jenkins, who initially supported Carly Fiorina for the GOP nomination. "But I trust the American people made their decision, and, by golly, he has the right to move forward with his agenda as promised to the American people. I think he’s capable of doing some really good things for this country.

"I’m of the opinion that we’re all on the airplane and he’s the pilot, and, by golly, we shouldn’t be rooting for him to go down. Because this is our country and we need him to be successful," she said. "Do I wish he would put his Twitter account on hold? Absolutely. But he thinks he’s found a way to directly communicate with the American people, and so he is what he is. I’m not changing him. He’s too old for that."

Jenkins made her remarks in Lawrence on the same day that the race to fill her seat next year heated up when Republican state Sen. Caryn Tyson, R-Parker, announced that she is entering the 2nd District GOP primary.

Tyson joins fellow Sen. Steve Fitzgerald, of Leavenworth, and Basehor City Councilman Vernon J. Fields in the GOP race. State Rep. Kevin Jones, of Wellsville, is also running.

Lawrence attorney Paul Davis, a former Kansas House minority leader and unsuccessful candidate for governor in 2014, has announced that he is running for the Democratic nomination. Neosho County resident Kelly Standley has also filed in that race.

The 2nd District covers most of eastern Kansas outside the Kansas City metropolitan area, including Lawrence and Topeka.

Comments

Richard Heckler 4 months, 3 weeks ago

TYPICAL Jenkins scripted response which says she cannot be trusted by the voters.

This is what Jenkins represents:

Anti American Dark Money Trail = Conservatives Declared War On America 37 years ago

BIG DOLLAR PROFITEERS PROVIDE BIG KICKBACKS HIDDEN UNDER THE CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTION UMBRELLA

This ongoing support for conservatives…. the spenders of large amounts of special interest money is mind numbing. There is no reason for any such activity.

37 years of voting conservative candidates posing as republicans into office has provided what?

--- War on public education

--- War against women

--- War on Voters Rights

--- War On Good Wages aka Right To Work Legislation

--- War On USA Jobs aka Free Trade Agreements and Leveraged Buyout Scams

--- War On Social Security Insurance

--- War On Medicaid

--- War On Medicare

--- War for Oil Control Worldwide

http://www.rightwingwatch.org/report/alec-the-voice-of-corporate-special-interests-in-state-legislatures/#Voter

=== Pay close attention to this 24/7 organized activity: http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2014/01/koch-brothers-candidate-training-recruiting-aegis-strategic

--- How the Koch brothers helped dismantle the Democratic Party https://samsmitharchives.wordpress.com/2015/04/14/6467/

Jeffry Helms 4 months, 3 weeks ago

Trump is acting like a "businessman" instead of a "politician' --I did not think of this when I voted for him-.President Trump literally has no experience in politics!!! --Most of his "agenda" needs to be done on the state and local level--the "wall" needs to be a mine field--because of financial and effectiveness reasons and he needs a democrat liberal advisor and press agent to advise him on media matters.

Michael Dennis 4 months, 3 weeks ago

By golly, good riddance, Lynn Jenkins. By Golly.

Michael Kort 4 months, 3 weeks ago

This is an evolutionary moment in time !

You have probably heard a mention in the past of, " THE CRAZY TRAIN " .

Well,... now.... here it is .........the newest ! .......the greatest !........wait no longer.........it's " THE CRAZY PLANE " !

Tom Weiss 4 months, 3 weeks ago

Lynn Jenkins explained the Republicans’ willingness to keep Trump in power by comparing him to an airline pilot. She was quoted as saying, "I’m of the opinion that we’re all on the airplane and he’s the pilot, and, by golly, we shouldn’t be rooting for him to go down. … Do I wish he would put his Twitter account on hold? Absolutely. But he thinks he’s found a way to directly communicate with the American people, and so he is what he is.”

Really! I wonder what she would do if she were on a plane and discovered that what the pilot had to say was repeatedly in conflict with the facts. Imagine if the pilot announced the plane was next in line for take-off but it then sat on the ground for an hour; after take-off the pilot announced that you could see the Grand Canyon out the left side of the plane, but when you looked you saw the ocean; and when questioned about this the pilot said that was only an oasis, a great watering hole, one of the greatest watering spots in the world. Perhaps she thought the flight was going to Chicago or New York, but now it looks like she might end up in Timbuktu. Would Lynn still want to continue with a pilot who lies and doesn’t seem to know in which direction he is headed? At what point would she be willing to let the co-pilot take over? Or for that matter, let any of a hundred passengers on board who could probably do a better job of flying the plane?

P Allen Macfarlane 4 months, 3 weeks ago

It's really more like a plot from the movie, Airplane -- a farce at best!

Calvin Anders 4 months, 3 weeks ago

Jenkins has been the worst kind of partisan. And now she wants to criticize the divisiveness and vilification she played along with and helped promote? If anything, she should be bragging about what a good soldier she has been for her party. She has always dutifully parroted Republican talking points. She has never demonstrated the faintest glimmer of independent thought. She always voted the party line. If she had ever made the slightest effort to reach across the isle her criticism of Democrats for failing to vote with Republicans might have a hint of a ring of truth. She will retire with a spotless record as a mindless sheep who chased donor money and never rocked the boat. She represented her party and it's wealthy donors rather than those who elected her. And it was her party who wrote the book on spiteful non-cooperation with the rival party.

Steve Hicks 4 months, 3 weeks ago

Rep. Jenkins herself seems to be a good person. And I don't doubt she went into politics with a genuine intention of doing good for her constituents.

But she's often stated that her political principle is that of her faction's founder, that "Government is the PROBLEM."

In logic, you have to wonder why members of her faction want to be part of "the PROBLEM." But they do. And doing so, they have massively proven the old adage: nothing they've done when in control of our government over the last 40 years has proven to be "part of the solution."

Rep. Jenkins seems to be a decent person. But her political principle that government is inherently evil gave her no basis for doing good when part of government.

It seems significant that even a true believer now finds it impossible to work with or in the vile situation (call it a "swamp") her fellow-believers have made of government, by their anti-government irrationality.

Calvin Anders 4 months, 3 weeks ago

What you describe, Steve, is someone who perpetuated corruption and exploitation of the electorate, but you still want to call her "decent". That seems like a banality of evil kind of argument. You are contending that she is not a bad person because she was just a cog in the wheel of corrupt government. I disagree.

Steve Hicks 4 months, 3 weeks ago

No, Jenkins is not excusable for being a cog in an evil organization. She absolutely chose to be part of that organization, and she willfully adopted their destructive illogic as her political principle.

She gets no pass on the irreparable harm her faction has done America. She was there, and she was taking part.

But I certainly believe she went into politics to do good for people.

Frustration with Congress probably shows she still realizes that's her and Congress' job. Making excuses for the current president, because he's her faction's choice, clearly shows she's not the right person to do that job.

She's right to quit, and the people of her district will be better off for it. Hopefully she'll re-examine, and change, her failed political beliefs.

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