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Welcome to the Laboratory
I think people need to understand that, not just on a national level but on an international level, Kansas is being viewed as the "laboratory" of the right.
I have friends all over Europe; Britain, Ireland, Germany and the Netherlands among them. You would be surprised how often the name of Kansas shows up in their major newspapers (often unfavorably).
Brownback's governance is being scrutinized, not just by the left, but by the right as well. Not only do I think that Brownback is highly aware of this, I think he is actively participating in it.
There is a difference in this state. Walker's doings in Wisconsin have very little that are "faith based" about them. Same can be said for Perry, at least in his governance. The traditional "right wing" states (i.e. TN, GA, KY, SC, NC and the like) have actually moved into a more centrist position as the right itself has pushed further to the right. Some have even rejected their Tea Party candidates.
Why was Kansas chosen for this dubious "honor"?
First, we have one of the most consistently and thoroughly "red" states in the union. Douglas County is the only county in the entire state that doesn't vote Republican. People need to realize that, given the same "grading poll" that Lawrence was given by the LJWorld, the results in places like Goodland, Garden City and Fort Hays would be far different. These are people with a totally different mindset. Voting Republican for them takes no thought and is simply a kneejerk reaction.
Next is Brownback himself. The fact that he successfully won three terms in Congress was an indication to the right wing "powers that be" (and I'm actually not including the RNP in this) that they could hand this state to him on a platter.
Brownback has an agenda and I am convinced it isn't his own. That agenda is to see just how far a state can be pushed; not just to the right, but the religious right, and be tolerated before it breaks. He has been put in the position of being "innovative" and "setting precedent" for the religious right. He is a "point man". The frightening thing is that, to date, he has been successful.
I think, for the right, this is the wave of the future. Depending on how successful Brownback is in Kansas (and to date he has been very successful) other states will begin to follow. I believe Texas will be next. It's a huge state with a kneejerk Republican population (similar to Kansas), a wildly popular governor and it's ripe for takeover.
Am I being a conspiracy theorist? I don't think so at all. I think that Brownback's "prayer meeting" with Perry, under the aegis of The Family, is far more than just a "prayer meeting". It's a summit meeting.
God help us all.