On May 30, the moderate Republican establishment demanded that Democrats vote for House Bill 2067, which Republicans insisted was their best offer. Democrats insisted a better tax bill was possible. They demanded one.
A week later, they got it, but not before withstanding an avalanche of unfair ridicule from some moderate Republicans.
Rep. Patty Markley attributed the Democratic opposition to HB 2067 to “egos,” alleging Democrats “want the session to implode so they can place blame on Republicans.” She compared Democratic holdouts to “alt-left … extremists.” Rep. Tom Cox, who sat out a tough vote on school vouchers earlier in the session, suggested two Democratic colleagues lacked “guts.”
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The Kansas City Star editorial board echoed the derisive factional talking points, accusing Democrats of “recalcitrance,” “playing dangerous political games” and “risking irrelevance.” (June 3, 12A, “Kansas Democrats risking irrelevance in budget battle”)
On June 6, the Democrats got the better tax bill they had predicted was possible. I hope those who derided the Democratic holdouts will now respect the fact that the days of Kansas Democrats serving as legislative doormats have passed. May they never return.
President Donald Trump pulling out of the Paris Climate Accord is reminiscent of a similar international disaster nearly 100 years ago.
At the end of World War I, President Woodrow Wilson (a Democrat) proposed the League of Nations to help provide international security and prevent another such terrible conflict.
Shortest version of the story: Wilson was unable to persuade the Republicans in the Senate to join the League. Because the nation whose leader proposed the League never joined it, the League never ascended to the position of strength that might have let it influence or control subsequent events.
Although there is obviously no way to say definitively that the League could have prevented the disaster that was World War II, the case can certainly be made that visionless Republicans did their part to guarantee that it never had the chance.
If anyone wants to point out that the same catastrophe is being played out today in a different (and potentially more calamitous) set of circumstances, well, that is your own conclusion to draw.
I, for one, believe the world is not better off when the United States tries to turn its back on the rest of the planet.
Believe me when I say that friends find me humorous or that I have a good sense of humor. Can you please tell me where the humor is in Glenn McCoy’s cartoons?
I am dumbfounded after seeing his attempts at humor for the past several years.
Seat at the table
Kansas City planning and zoning meetings take place in the City Council chamber on the 26th floor of City Hall. Unfortunately, the physical arrangement and meeting structure highlight corporate voices and minimize voices of the people.
Committee members sit at the front and along the sides of the front area. Directly facing them are two members of the planning commission, with two people representing the developer seated to the right of the planning commission. Members of the public sit farther back, behind the front partition.
People in the front area of the council chamber get extended time to show slides and speak, while members of the public frequently are limited to one or two minutes each.
I urge committees to modify meeting structures, allowing the community a seat at the table both literally and figuratively.
Shift the developers’ and planning commission’s seating slightly to the right, leaving a space for community representatives to the left of the planning commission in the front area. (I suggest including the affected neighborhood association, business/commerce organization and/or historical association.)
Give official community groups time to speak along with the developer and the planning commission — and then allow other interested parties a minute or two to speak.
What if after checking into the Russian connections, we find out that the Russians did interfere with election tabulations in three key states and that President Donald Trump didn’t win?