Published in the Iola Register on Dec. 13, 2010.

Republicans tap King to fill Schmidt’s term

State Rep. Jeff King, R-Independence, will fill the unexpired term of Derek Schmidt in the Kansas Senate.
Senate 15th District Republicans chose King in a special convention Saturday in Yates Center to replace Schmidt, who was elected Nov. 2 to become the next Kansas attorney general in January.
King was chosen over three other Republican candidates for Schmidt’s seat: Casey Lair of Neodesha, Rep. Forrest Knox of Fredonia and Jim Robinson of Williamsburg.
King has been a state representative since 2007.
Only Republican precinct delegates from within the 15th District, which includes all of Allen County, were allowed to vote on Schmidt’s replacement. Of the 240 Republican precinct committee delegates, 231 attended Saturday’s convention.
It took two rounds of votes before King topped the 116 delegate votes needed to receive the nomination, according to the Montgomery County Chronicle.
“I won’t legislate any differently than I have in the past ... other than I’m going to (be speaking) for more people and for a larger area of southeast Kansas,” King told the Chronicle. “The 15th District probably has been hit the hardest economically speaking of any Senate district in the state. Our needs are profound.”
Schmidt lauded the choice.
“ I have known Jeff King all his life and have served with him in the legislature for years,” Schmidt said in a press release. “He will be a respected member of the Senate and will be an effective voice for the needs and interests of the 15th District.