This week has been a wild one in Topeka, including the news that irresponsible Kansas GOP Rep. Willie Dove left a loaded gun in a public Capitol committee room. But wait: There’s more!
— Gov. Sam Brownback is pleading with Donald Trump’s administration to send $240 million in U.S. taxpayer dollars to help pay for Kansas road and bridge repairs.
Kansas is in a pickle because Brownback has diverted more than $1 billion from the state’s road maintenance fund and plans to divert another $600 million by mid-2018. It’s part of his “plan” to balance the general budget he has ruined with his irresponsible 2012 income tax cuts.
State officials have delayed several dozen road projects, upsetting lawmakers and contractors who say construction jobs are fleeing to other states.
In short, Brownback hopes people in other states will pay for the drastic budget mistakes he has made. The ploy probably won’t work, though, at least if anyone in D.C. considers Brownback’s pitiful track record in leading his state.
And remember: This is the same governor who has turned down hundreds of millions of federal Medicaid expansion dollars to help lower-income and other Kansans. Just shameful.
— State Rep. John Witmer, a Wichita Republican, on Thursday introduced a new version of a discriminatory bathroom bill.
As The Wichita Eagle reported, it “would require transgender students to use bathrooms that correspond with their gender at birth and enable the attorney general to take legal action if they don’t.”
Whoa. The attorney general? Alas, that state office didn’t know it would be set up to be the bad guy in punishing kids in K-12 schools who want to go to the bathroom that matches what they consider their real gender — not their birth gender. The office was “not consulted in the drafting of this bill,” a spokeswoman said.
Though Whitmer’s first bathroom measure didn’t gain traction in 2016, the witless House member says his new measure is a “compromise.” That’s a lie, according to Equality Kansas officials, who vowed to fight it.
Many Kansas school districts are finding sensible ways to accommodate the needs of transgender students, just as they are meeting the needs of other students.
But Whitmer, he of the “little government” GOP, embraces a Big Brother over-reach that would just bring more shame to Kansas.