Kansas legislators deserve more pay



November 22, 2019 - 4:15 PM

To better represent Kansans, we citizens should press for better pay for our lawmakers.  This is a simple statement, and such a change would not guarantee better policies, however they are defined.  But without question, higher salaries would produce a Legislature that looks a lot more like the overall population of the state.

Let’s be clear. The argument here is that governmental structures and processes powerfully affect the policies that legislatures, governors, and courts produce.

In Kansas, Secretary of State Kris Kobach consistently sought to restrict access to the polls through harsh registration and voting rules. He succeeded only in part, but his policies might well have resulted in a couple of Kansas Senate districts electing conservative Republicans rather than Democrats (or moderate Republicans).  That is important, even crucial. Had one less conservative Republican been elected to the state senate in 2016, a good year for moderates of both parties, Medicaid expansion would likely have passed in 2019.

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