July 27, 2017

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Kansas, Latest News

DGA Statement on Kansas Governor Sam Brownback’s Nomination

Today, the DGA released the following statement regarding Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback’s nomination to be Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom:

“Governor Brownback leaves behind a smoldering fire in Kansas, and Jeff Colyer will only pour more gasoline on it,”  said DGA Communications Director Jared Leopold. “Jeff Colyer has been the single biggest cheerleader of Governor Brownback’s disastrous policies that ruined Kansas’s economy. There’s no question about it: Sam Brownback clone Jeff Colyer will force more Brownback economics on Kansans.”

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Background:
Kansas City Star Article: “Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer Might Be as Committed to Brownback’s Budget Theories as the Governor Himself.” According to the Kansas City Star, “Could Kansas more easily address its budget problems if Gov. Sam Brownback leaves the state for a new job? […] Some think it wouldn’t make much difference. The state’s revenue shortfall is so deep and structural, many lawmakers say, that rebalancing the state’s books will be difficult and time-consuming no matter who’s in the governor’s office. And Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer might be as committed to Brownback’s budget theories as the governor himself. Colyer would also need to rely, at least for now, on the same advisers as Brownback.” [Kansas City Star, 12/1/16]

AP Reported, “Many Lawmakers in Both Parties See Colyer as a Political Partner of Brownback” on Taxes and the Economy. According to the Associated Press, “While lawmakers are focused on increasing income taxes, Brownback is pushing to boost cigarette and liquor taxes and annual business filing fees while using internal government borrowing, the diversion of highway funds and other accounting moves to get the state through. Legislators are debating whether Colyer would be more willing than Brownback to compromise on some income tax issues, such as ending an exemption enacted in 2012 for more than 330,000 farmers and business owners. But many lawmakers in both parties see Colyer as a political partner of Brownback.” [Associated Press, 3/11/17]

Colyer Made Three Loans to Brownback’s Campaign Totaling $1.5 Million. According to the Kansas City Star, “Federal prosecutors will bring no criminal charges after an investigation into loans made to Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback’s re-election campaign by his lieutenant governor, the U.S. attorney’s office said Wednesday. […] Colyer made three loans totaling $1.5 million to the campaign. That raised eyebrows not only because their size was unusual in Kansas politics, but because the first two were repaid within days. Democrats speculated they might have been timed to inflate campaign finance reports. They came as the Republican governor in a deeply conservative state faced the real prospect of losing to the well-financed Democratic challenger, Paul Davis.” [Kansas City Star, 6/17/15]

Colyer Praised Brownback’s Economic Plan. According to the Hays Daily News, “Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer wielded a broom Thursday at Thirsty ‘s Brew Pub & Grill in Hays and urged approximately 100 supporters to vote for a Republican sweep in Tuesday’s election. […] Colyer said adding 58,000 private-sector jobs since January 2011 is among the feats achieved by the Kansas State Legislature and Brownback. ‘We cut taxes, lowered regulation and put more money in people’s pockets,’ he said.” [Hays Daily News, 10/30/14]