Sam Brownback

Kansas election was about taxes, spending

Derrick Sontag of Americans for Prosperity, Kansas chapter analyzes the recent Kansas election and what the results mean. Sontag is optimistic when he writes -- referring to the many new conservatives elected to the Kansas House of Representatives -- "These new statehouse members will not bow to the demands of taxpayer-funded lobbyists as their predecessors did." I hope he's correct. Read a paper, watch the news, or venture online and one will find numerous opinions as to why this month’s election results were as one-sided as they were in Kansas. Experts have compared campaign strategies, analyzed campaign finance reports, even…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Sunday November 7, 2010

Wichita City Council this week. Spirit AeroSystems asks for $7.5 million in Industrial Revenue Bonds (IRB). IRBs are not loans made by the city. In fact, in this case the bonds will be purchased by Spirit itself, says the agenda report: "Spirit AeroSystems, Inc. intends to purchase the bonds itself, through direct placement, and the bonds will not be reoffered for sale to the public." The reason for the bonds is the property tax exemption on property purchased with the bond proceeds. Additionally, Spirit may not have to pay sales tax on the purchases. This is a public hearing designed…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Thursday November 4, 2010

The future of politics is here, now. After noting how California reached way back to the past to elect a governor, Denis Boyles writes in National Review Online about the future, and how it's being made right here: "If you want to see the bright and shining politics of the future, you have to go to the country’s heartland, and specifically to Kansas, a place most Democrats only know from Thomas Frank’s liberal folklore. There, the election has yielded two new congressmen -- Mike Pompeo and the remarkable Tim Huelskamp -- who were not created by the Tea Party movement…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Friday October 29, 2010

This Week in Kansas. Rebecca Zepick of State of the State KS, Malcolm Harris of Mammon Among Friends and Friends University, and myself join host Tim Brown to discuss politics, elections, shale gas, and Wichita's aircraft industry. "This Week in Kansas" airs in Topeka on WIBW TV channel 13 Saturdays at 11:30 am, and in Wichita on KAKE TV channel 10 Sundays at 9:00 am. Business jets and elections. Speaking of Malcolm Harris, his recent blog post Business jets and elections provides an accurate look at the past two years, with Harris noting that our economic problems are long-term in…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Tuesday October 26, 2010

Karl Rove. "Former George W. Bush aide Matt Latimer was there to observe the dealings of Karl Rove during the previous administration, and he writes that there’s no secret why most conservatives have now come to view Rove as a fraud. Latimer says that Rove has become symbolic of a GOP establishment that’s known for its utter betrayal and ruin of the Party that Reagan had left so strong. Now that his secret is out, Rove’s influence will only continue to diminish as time goes on and the Tea Parties take over." A fascinating look at the legacy of Rove,…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Sunday October 24, 2010

Surprise endorsement from Wichita Eagle. Today the Wichita Eagle endorsed Republican Mike Pompeo over Democrat Raj Goyle in the race for the Kansas fourth Congressional district. Surprising. Still, the Eagle editorial board can't help reveal its preference for big, expansive government by taking a few digs at Pompeo, describing his free-market, limited government views as "overly idealistic at times." Continuing, the Eagle wrote "For example, he believes that there wouldn't be a need for farm subsidies or economic development incentives if there were lower tax rates and a friendlier and more stable regulatory environment. That's not the real world." The…
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Kansas spending should be cut, not frozen

By Dave Trabert, Kansas Policy Institute. A recent Wichita Eagle editorial, “Freeze means big cuts,” said gubernatorial candidate Sam Brownback’s intention to freeze state spending would cause big cuts in services by not replacing federal stimulus money. The unspoken presumptions one must accept to make that leap are (1) every government program and service is essential and (2) every program and service is being provided as efficiently as possible. Most programs are never examined to determine whether they are effective, and independent efficiency studies are rarely conducted, yet we’re to believe that government could not possibly spend less money without…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Monday October 11, 2010

Moran at Wichita Pachyderm: This Friday's speaker at the Wichita Pachyderm Club is current United States Representative and Republican Party Senate nominee Jerry Moran. As a large audience is expected, please arrive by 11:45 to get your buffet lunch in time for the noon start (the larger meeting room will be used). Cost is $10, which includes lunch. Wichita, get control of incentives: Rhonda Holman's lead editorial in yesterday's Wichita Eagle urged caution and restraint in Wichita's use of tax incentives -- a welcome message not expected from the Eagle. One conservative wrote to me: "I am stunned to find…
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Political site FiveThirtyEight looks at polls, statistics

The political website FiveThirtyEight provides an innovative look at political forecasting and also supplies useful information about candidates and political districts. The site FiveThirtyEight.com was active during the 2008 campaign season. Now it is a feature of the New York Times and can be accessed at fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com. The name comes from from the number of electors in the United States electoral college. FiveThirtyEight uses a variety of methods to arrive at its results, including polls, where polls are weighted by several factors including recency, sample size, and the polling firm's track record. Some polls are considered so unreliable that they…
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School choice solution to Kansas school funding

In its search to find a solution to the problem of funding its government schools, Kansas is overlooking a sure solution: widespread school choice. While proponents of public school spending argue that school choice programs drain away dollars from needy, underfunded public schools, this is not the case. In 2007 The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice released the study School Choice by the Numbers: The Fiscal Effect of School Choice Programs, 1990-2006. According to the executive summary: "Every existing school choice program is at least fiscally neutral, and most produce a substantial savings." How can this be? The public school…
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Next Democrat Strategy: The October Surprise?

A guest Op-Ed by Sue C. So far this election cycle Democrat strategies used against Republicans have included demonization, fear mongering, racism accusations, and voting record fabrications. None of which seem to be working well (here), proving that most people distrust not only politicians but also the liberal media. Regardless, we need to be prepared for the next level of attack: The Democrat October Surprise. I predict that this tactic will be widely used this fall. Expect it to be delivered within days of the election. Timing will be crucial. Democrats will want to ensure that the “surprise” inflicts the…
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Americans believe teachers should be paid based on merit

A Gallup poll finds that Americans overwhelmingly believe that teacher salary should be paid "on the basis of the quality of his/her work." 72 percent of public school parents believe this. A related question asked "How closely should a teacher's salary he tied to his/her students' academic achievement?" 75 percent of public school parents answered either "very" or "somewhat closely tied." Then, 78 percent of parents answered "yes" to this question: "Do you have trust and confidence in the men and women who are teaching children in the public schools?" Taken together, the responses to these question indicated that Americans…
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Brownback paves plan for Kansas education reform

Last week near Emporia Sam Brownback, surrounded by Kansas educators and legislators, laid out the start of his plan for improving Kansas education if he is elected governor. His opponents in the race for Kansas Governor are Reform Party candidate Ken Cannon, Libertarian Andrew Gray, and Democrat Tom Holland. Mark Parkinson, the incumbent, decided not to run. In his remarks, Brownback said that education is "primary function of the state." While Kansas has excellent schools, he said that more innovation is needed. In the area of teachers, Brownback wants more mentoring opportunities available to young teachers. He supports a master…
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Brownback, Colyer announce in Wichita

On Tuesday, United States Senator Sam Brownback formally filed to become a candidate for the Republican party nomination to be governor of Kansas. He also introduced his running mate. On Friday, it was speculated that Kansas Senator Jeff Colyer was Brownback's selection to run on the ticket for lieutenant governor. Suspense was largely eliminated when a reader of Hawver's Capital Report noted that the location scheduled in Hays for a campaign stop was Colyer's high school. On Tuesday morning in Overland Park, it was made official: Colyer is the nominee for lieutenant governor. In a late Tuesday afternoon campaign stop…
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Wichita Tea Party, from AFP

Here's a message from Americans For Prosperity's Kansas state director Derrick Sontag about the Wichita Tea Party this Friday. It started with people like you, logging on and signing our petition at NoStimulus.com, and now we have a full-blown grassroots movement on our hands. One such activist, Nancy Armstrong, supported Hillary Clinton in the 2008 primary and even went on the road, campaigning for the former New York Senator. But while on the campaign trail, Nancy learned more than she anticipated about the Obama campaign. Now she’s joining the fight against the massive deficit spending bill by organizing the Wichita…
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Area Residents Plan Wichita Tea Party

Grassroots movement sweeps into Wichita with anti-stimulus rally WICHITA -- Grassroots activists in Wichita will rally outside Sen. Sam Brownback’s office on Friday, to show their appreciation to the senator for opposing the federal stimulus bill, and to demonstrate their frustration with big government spending. Nancy Armstrong, Garden Plain, organized the rally at 11:30 a.m. Friday, Feb. 27 outside Sen. Sam Brownback’s office (245 N. Waco, Wichita). Sen. Brownback voted against the federal bailout bill. Armstrong said Friday’s rally is intended to thank the Senator for standing in opposition to this bill, but also to let everyday Kansans vent their…
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Earmarks and pork thoroughly established

In a letter printed in the February 22, 2008 Wichita Eagle, Sedgwick County Commission Chairman Tom Winters, along with Wichita State University President Don Beggs, praised some Kansas congressmen for being "very effective Washington advocates for south-central Kansas." What the congressmen -- Rep. Todd Tiahrt, R-Goddard, and Kansas Sens. Sam Brownback and Pat Roberts -- did was to "roll up their sleeves and work on many issues that help improve our quality of life in the Wichita area." Sounds like a noble cause, doesn't it? What the three congressmen did was to secure federal funding for several projects deemed important…
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