Happy new week to you, too.
By STEVE KRASKE
The Kansas City Star
• “I'm not saying `no’ to the opportunity is the best way of putting it.” — Republican John Brunner on the possibility that he will run for governor in 2016.
Brunner, who ran for the U.S. Senate in Missouri in 2012, but lost to Todd Akin in the GOP primary, told the AP he’s considering a run for a different office in two years. Already two other Republicans — Catherine Hanaway and Tom Schweich — have expressed interest in running for governor. That Brunner also is interested just adds to the likelihood that Republicans will have to endure another high-profile, and potentially damaging, intra-party fight for the nomination. Democrat Chris Koster, the two-term attorney general, already has raised $1.6 million for the race and remains unchallenged for his party’s nomination.
• “If Paul Davis is somewhere in the ballpark with Sam Brownback on Labor Day, two months before the general election, we're going to see the ugliest campaign in the history of the state.” — University of Kansas political scientist Burdett Loomis on the 2014 race for governor between Brownback, the GOP incumbent, and Davis, the likely Democratic candidate.
Loomis spoke at a forum at Washburn University last week. His point: If the race is close, both sides will go heavy negative on the other down the stretch to win it. Brownback remains the favorite for a second term.
• “Every day that legislators realize that some of these bills are just outright discrimination being written into state statute is a good day, whether it’s Valentine’s Day or any other day.” — Thomas Witt, spokesman for the LGBT rights group Equality Kansas.
Witt was talking about the news last week that the state Senate won’t consider the increasingly well-known House Bill 2453 in its present form. The bill would allow public or private employees to refuse service based on religious views about marriage. Proponents billed it as safeguarding religious freedoms, while opponents said it sanctioned discrimination by taxpayer-paid workers. They said a police officer could refuse to help a citizen in need under the law’s provisions. The House passed the bill, and its leaders are now reeling from the national attention the measure’s received.
• “Her record is what will be judged upon, and not the record of her husband.” — Mitt Romney, the 2012 GOP presidential nominee on Hillary Clinton and whether she should be asked to account for her husband’s affair with Monica Lewinsky if she runs for president.
Romney was disagreeing with Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul's assertions that Hillary Clinton should respond to questions about her husband’s affair. Instead, Romney said Hillary Clinton should have to answer for her performance as secretary of state. Speaking on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Romney again said he wouldn’t run for president in 2016.