Locals sound off on Toland nomination

Local News

April 1, 2019 - 10:15 AM

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Disagreements and personality clashes in the small southeast Kansas town of Iola might be a root cause of a current battle over Democratic Gov. Laura Kelley’s nomination to lead the Kansas Department of Commerce, according to some residents of the town.

Some Republicans and the state’s most influential anti-abortion group are fighting David Toland’s nomination, citing two grants totaling less than $20,000 to Thrive Allen County, an economic group he previously managed in Iola. The grants came from a fund in memory of the late abortion provider Dr. George Tiller, although neither grant was used to fund abortions.

While he was CEO of Thrive Allen County, Toland often clashed with Virginia Crossland-Macha, the newly-elected vice-chairwoman of the Kansas Republican Party and the daughter of the founder of Crossland Construction, one of the nation’s largest general contractors, The Kansas News Service reported.

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