More Troubles in Kansas for the Wizards of Oz

By: Saturday September 20, 2014 9:15 am

The November 2014 election campaign in Kansas wasn’t supposed to work like this. Four years ago, Sam Brownback swept into the governor’s mansion, Kris Kobach became secretary of state, and the GOP in Topeka began to enact a sweeping agenda made up of every item on every conservative’s wish list. Two years ago, when a number of Republican state senators blocked a few of the most extreme items on that list, conservatives primaried them out of the legislature. But today, Brownback, Kobach, and Senator Pat Roberts are in deep, deep electoral trouble. These Wizards of Oz have only one campaign strategy open to them, and it’s not one that has a lot of success in Kansas . . .

 

Kansas Supreme Court Rules Against Brownback’s Assertion of Legislative Supremacy

By: Saturday March 8, 2014 10:08 am

In January 2013, a district court in Kansas ruled in Gannon v State of Kansas that the Kansas legislature was not meeting its constitutional obligation to properly fund K-12 education in the state. The ruling was a huge blow to Sam Brownback and his cronies, as it would require either huge state budget cuts elsewhere or (gasp) eliminating the tax cuts he so lovingly pushed through the legislature. Brownback et al. have been shouting for months that this is a political matter for the legislature, not the courts, to decide and yesterday’s ruling takes this shouting head on. Indeed, the bulk of the 110 page ruling is devoted to addressing this question, and they repeatedly and at length told Brownback and his minions in the legislature to pipe down and do their jobs.

Oh, and they then found big, big constitutional problems with the state funding of education . . .

Brownback and the Problem of Facts

By: Saturday January 12, 2013 10:00 am

In the governor’s mansion in Brownbackistan, there is wailing and gnashing of teeth this morning. In the offices of many school districts across the state, there is much rejoicing. The reason? A state district court ruled that the schools of Kansas have been shortchanged by the ultraconservatives in the state legislature of the constitutionally-required money to provide a decent education to the children of the state.

The way the district court made its point was to point repeatedly to those pesky things that Stephen Colbert rightly noted have a liberal bias: facts. And they pointed them out with great style and elan, taking deliberate aim at the Governor and his minions.

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