Gov. Sam Brownback and his extremist Republican legislative supporters in Topeka just got hit with a massive body blow from four ex-governors of Kansas.
And the Aug. 2 GOP primaries just got a lot hotter.
In a shocking, bipartisan — and accurate — rebuke of Brownback, former governors Bill Graves, Mike Hayden, John Carlin and Kathleen Sebelius sent out a letter to Kansans on Friday.
That’s two Republicans (Graves and Hayden) and two Democrats (Carlin and Sebelius) joining forces to lambaste Brownback.
The letter announced a political organization called Save Kansas, “founded to educate citizens about Kansas public policy issues.” They included a balanced tax policy, quality educational opportunity and judicial impartiality.
The four ex-governors released the letter on the same day the Legislature was desperately trying to find a way to keep public schools open with a constitutional funding plan.
Essentially, the letter is a call to arms for Kansans to throw out some of the ultra-conservative Republican lawmakers who have supported Brownback’s reckless income tax cuts starting in 2012 and going all the way through the 2016 session.
“I’m not pleased with the direction we’re going and believe we must change the faces in the legislature,” Carlin said.
Added Hayden, “Our state of affairs is on a continuous decline. It’s time to acknowledge the experiment has failed,” referring to Brownback’s claim about the tax cuts from four years ago.
Those cuts have led to massive budget reductions, diversions of road funds, postponement of state pension fund payments and cuts to social service budgets.
Brownback refuses to acknowledge his errors and huge mistakes, as recently as Wednesday saying everything would be going all right if only the Kansas farming and oil economies would sputter back to life.
That ignores the large, $650 million decrease in income tax revenues caused by the 2012 tax cuts, which have adversely affected public services.
In the letter, the four ex-governors say they need money for Save Kansas to “educate voters on the issues.”
And it adds that it wants to “draw a contrast between deserving candidates and those who serve only to push forward the governor’s dangerous agenda.”
The letter is designed to help moderate Republican candidates oust the ultra-conservatives in the Aug. 2 primaries.
Now we will see if that happens.