The Buzz

The facts, faces and hum of local politics with Steve Kraske and Dave Helling

BuzzChatter Wednesday: The No-Quotes-About-The-Shutdown edition

10/09/2013 6:00 AM

10/08/2013 4:08 PM

The sizzling, non-shutdown quotes on this Wednesday morning:

• “It would say anything goes. There aren’t a lot of functioning democracies around the world that work this way, where you can basically have millionaires and billionaires bankrolling whoever they want, however they want, in some cases undisclosed. And what it means is ordinary Americans are shut out of the process.” — President Barack Obama on the campaign-finance case before the Supreme Court.

A majority of justices on Tuesday appeared skeptical about the aggregate limit on how much individuals can contribute to federal candidates in an election cycle. Obama was referring to a new set of standards the Republican National Committee has proposed. Some say future limits on individual donations may be in doubt.

• “All kids are hurt if there is not enough money in the system.” — Alan Rupe, Wichita, who represents four school districts and several elementary pupils who want more money for K-12 education in Kansas. Rupe spoke to the Kansas Supreme Court in a pivotal school funding case. Rupe’s remarks appeared in Hawver’s Capitol Report.

“Why should the state pay more for kids who (already) are getting a suitable education?” — Dan Biles, who represented the State Board of Education in a prior school funding case. Biles wanted to know how many pupils were not getting an appropriate level of education services.

The state Supreme Court is now weighing a case that will have resounding political ramnifications for the conservative Legislature and governor. Justices offered no date for when a decision might be expected, but many insiders expect a ruling late this or early next year when lawmakers reconvene.

• “We simply do not believe taxpayer dollars should be used to recruit people to be on welfare.” — Theresa Freed, spokesperson for the Kansas Department for Children and Families in a Kansas Health Institute story. The agency has decided to drop its participation in a federal grant program designed to help poor people apply for food-stamp benefits.

These are rough times for food-stamp recipients. In Missouri, thousands of residents are at-risk of losing access to food stamps under a rule change that Gov. Jay Nixon is proposing.

• “Plan for the worst but hope for the best.” — Kansas Supreme Court Justice Lawton Nuss on a judicial system funding shortfall that could result in employee furloughs and courthouse closings.

Nuss said the court system needs another $8 million for the budget year beginning July 1 to stave off a round of courthouse closings that could last seven weeks.

• “We’re going to do a challenge. I’m going to try and download every movie ever made and you are going to try to sign up for Obamacare — and we’ll see which happens first.” — Jon Stewart to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

Sebelius did the only smart thing she could do, and that was laugh.


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