Subpoenas, allegations, feud disrupt end of session

The ethics commission issued subpoenas to GOP legislators and political operatives, including the Kansas Chamber, as part of an investigation into political action committees tied to conservative causes and legislators.

By

State News

April 4, 2022 - 1:49 PM

House Speaker Ron Ryckman, left, said it was inappropriate for the Kansas Governmental Ethics Commission to issue subpoenas to members of the Kansas Legislature during the session. Rumors of the subpoenas has circulated for weeks and led to allegations of wrongdoing by House Democrats. KANSAS REFLECTOR/TIM CARPENTER

TOPEKA — The Kansas Legislature’s end-of-session avalanche of votes was disrupted by an abrupt attempt to force out the state ethics commission’s executive director, allegations of a pay-to-play Medicaid maneuver and fallout from an unusual lawsuit pitting Republican political consultants against each other.

Action under the dome before adjournment early Saturday included Republican lawmakers’ surprise attempt to write into state law a requirement the executive director of the Kansas Governmental Ethics Commission hold a Kansas license to practice law. The target of their ire was executive director Mark Skoglund, the top regulator of legislators’ campaign finance activities who fell out of favor among some Republicans.

The final hours also featured disclosure the ethics commission issued subpoenas to GOP legislators and political operatives, including the Kansas Chamber, as part of an investigation into political action committees tied to conservative causes and legislators.

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