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

Professor calls out Brownback, accuses Republicans of 'red-state radicalism'

02/14/2014 7:15 AM

02/14/2014 7:15 AM

And a happy Valentine’s Day to you, too.

• “Red-state radicalism.” — Wichita State University professor Ed Flentje, who’s worked for Kansas Republican governors,

on the policies of current Gov. Sam Brownback.

Flentje, who’s been critical of Brownback in a column he writes, was especially critical of Brownback’s tax philosophy, saying the governor is abandoning what he called 80 years of balanced tax policy. He said in his view, the governor’s approach is “throwing state finances in disarray” and shifting the tax burden to lower-income Kansans.

• “Nancy Pelosi today is running the floor of the House.” — Kansas Congressman Tim Huelskamp, a Republican, on Newsmax TV lamenting the successful debt-ceiling vote in the House. Pelosi is the House Democratic leader.

Huelskamp, from western Kansas, appeared exasperated by the vote and wondered what the point of a Republican majority is when bills come to the House floor that Democrats and only a few Republicans can support. In the House, the debt-ceiling bill was approved 221-201, with 193 Democrats and 28 Republicans voting for it.

• “I'm a little offended, quite frankly, with these accusations. Is there any foundation to say it infringes on the rights to freedom of expression?” — Tim Emert, a member of the Kansas Board of Regents,

responding to the latest resolution

from university employees asking the board to suspend an unpopular social media policy.

The policy, stemming from the David Guth NRA tweet last year, allows state universities to fire employees based on content posted via social media. The Regents appear to be standing solid on their policy with Regents chairman Fred Logan insisting that the board “feels it acted appropriately.”

• “For our Republicans colleagues to go so far out of their way to help Democrats win more House seats this year is no small gesture, and we greatly appreciate it. Keep the crazy coming, boys. Keep the crazy coming.” — Missouri House Minority Leader Jake Hummel marveling over a second set of impeachment articles filed Thursday against Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon.

State Rep. Mike Moon, an Ash Grove Republican, filed these articles Thursday. This set — the second from Republicans in two weeks — charged that Nixon moved too slowly to call special elections for vacant legislative seats. In fact, one House seat has remained vacant since June. Hanging in the balance is whether the GOP has enough votes to override Nixon vetoes. Moon has a point: Nixon HAS dragged his heels on this. Once upon a time, this was known as playing politics. In today’s Missouri, it’s grounds for impeachment. We’ve said it before. This is silliness and a ridiculous overreach.

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