When the Mainstream Coalition held its “Walk the Vote” event Saturday, just over 500 people reportedly showed up.
Leaders of the organization that has strong supporters in Johnson County said they wanted to raise money to “keep the momentum going in Kansas.”
This progressive group properly wants to elect more Democrats and more moderate Republicans from the Kansas City area to the House and Senate in 2018. The targets definitely will include some of the remaining ultra-conservative GOP members in Johnson County. Fortunately, Mainstream in 2016 helped push a few Democrats and moderate Republicans across the finish line when some ultra-cons were defeated.
The 2016 elections helped turn the Legislature into a place where common sense ruled. Earlier this month, in a seismic event, Gov. Sam Brownback’s disastrous tax cuts were finally rolled back to a great degree. That will help put the Kansas budget back on track, better financing public services for Kansans.
Note the word “bipartisan” above. It’s what a lot of people were talking about regarding the walk. And it’s why the ultra-con GOP in Johnson County should be scared of what might happen in 2018 and 2020 elections.
On Saturday, Democrat Rep. Nancy Lusk reported in before the walk was scheduled to begin.
Getting ready to Walk the Vote. pic.twitter.com/0S0TSw1KBz
— Rep. Nancy Lusk (@NancyLusk) June 17, 2017
Moderate Republican Stephanie Clayton was happy to be there.
— ❄️Stephanie Clayton❄ (@SSCJoCoKs) June 17, 2017
A few hours later a conversation started after Rep. Jim Ward, the House minority leader, posted this.
— Jim Ward (@RepJimWard) June 17, 2017
That irritated Eric Teetsel, president of the Family Policy Alliance of Kansas, which promotes itself this way on Twitter: “Join us for a Kansas where God is honored, religious freedom flourishes, families thrive, and life is cherished.”
— Eric Teetsel (@EricTeetsel) June 17, 2017
Moderate Republican Melissa Rooker posed with fellow GOP elected officials — as well as Ward (red shirt, top row) and a few other Democrats.
— Melissa Rooker (@MelissaRooker) June 17, 2017
Kansas City Star political reported Bryan Lowry offered a pithy comment on the goings on.
— Bryan Lowry (@BryanLowry3) June 17, 2017
And Democratic Sen. Laura Kelly responded later in the day to Teetsel’s concern:
— Laura Kelly (@SenatorKelly) June 17, 2017
The Mainstream Coalition will face plenty of obstacles when the next election cycles roll around.
GOP gubernatorial candidate Kris Kobach already has indicated he wants to reinstate deep tax cuts if elected in 2018. He would need help to do that. Ultra-con Republicans likely will attack Democrats and moderate GOP members for voting in 2016 for the tax increases.
At that point, voters in this area will have a duty to keep Kansas on the correct track.