Daily Archives: Dec. 1, 2013

Open thread (Dec. 1)

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What would Bob Dole do on farm bill?

farmThe farm bill has become a poster child of congressional dysfunction. The previous bill expired two months ago, yet the House and Senate still can’t agree on a new bill. The biggest hang-up is food stamps. The Senate approved a $4 billion cut over 10 years, while the House approved a $20 billion cut. Meanwhile, some House GOP lawmakers are holding out for a $39 billion cut. Former Kansas Sen. Bob Dole helped pass previous farm bills with broad bipartisan support. What is his advice to today’s lawmakers, particularly House members? In a commentary he co-wrote earlier this fall, Dole was blunt as usual: “This is no time to play politics with hunger.”

Kansas has a gubernatorial race; Roberts re-energized

brownbackhandPondering who’s up and down in politics these days, the Kansas City Star’s Steve Kraske noted that the old conventional wisdom was that Gov. Sam Brownback (in photo) would “breeze to a second four years. The new CW: He still will, but with a hitch in his gait against the Paul Davis-Jill Docking Democratic ticket. Put Brownback’s odds at maybe 3-to-1. The issue remains Brownback’s anemic poll numbers. We’re going to have a race, folks.” As for Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., Kraske wrote: “He’s making all the right moves with tea party challenger Milton Wolf now staring him in the face for the August 2014 primary. Roberts remains a prohibitive favorite. Still, it’s breathtaking to see the extent to which the challenge has re-energized the three-term senator.”

So they said

waglenew“Legislating is a very intensive process. Emotions run high, and it can be confrontational. That’s why one of the first things I did when I became Senate president was get rid of the space underneath the door to my office, so people can’t hear what is going on outside. We sealed it, because we didn’t want those conversations to be heard.” – Senate President Susan Wagle (in photo), R-Wichita, in a Pittsburg speech

“I can’t use KPERS to gas up our buses.” – Paul Dorathy, superintendent of Baldwin City schools, on how the governor’s efforts to better fund the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System don’t help pay district bills

“Looks like Wichita special interests won’t be happy until they control all #ksleg in #joco. It’s time to stand up.” – Rep. Stephanie Clayton, R-Overland Park, tweeting about a report that Craig Gabel’s Wichita-based Kansas for Liberty group may try to recall Rep. Melissa Rooker, R-Fairway, and Rep. Diana Dierks, R-Salina, over their education voting records