Letters to the Editor

Letters: Readers discuss Kris Kobach’s priorities, Medicaid and the Nichols fountain

Kobach candidacy

Kris Kobach spent an inordinate amount of his guest commentary in The Star patting himself on the back for “tackling” illegal immigration and reminding us how rampant the issue is in Kansas. (June 25, 17A, “Kansas needs a governor who will tackle issues”)

Unfortunately, Kobach has also spent an inordinate amount of time flying around the country pursuing his anti-immigrant ideology at the expense of his responsibilities as Kansas’ secretary of state.

As The Star reported in May, Kobach is credited with convicting nine individuals who committed voter fraud since 2015 (out of nearly 1.8 million Kansans registered to vote). Not exactly “rampant” kind of numbers, and certainly not worthy of his full attention when the state has had far more pressing issues.

As The Star also recently reported, Kobach was a source of President Donald Trump’s unsubstantiated claim that millions illegally voted in the 2016 presidential election. Kobach has yet to offer evidence to back up Trump’s claim.

Kobach has demonstrated he is a politician with a very narrow agenda. As it’s difficult to identify one positive contribution he has made as secretary of state, it’s even more difficult to fathom why Kansans would want him serving in the governor’s office.

Mark Hannifan


Crucial Medicaid

One in seven people who rely on Medicaid — many of whom are children — has a disability. These Medicaid-funded services are at risk of elimination: The American Health Care Act proposes enormous cuts that would end the services that millions depend on for healthy, independent lives.

Through my work as chief executive officer of Easterseals Midwest, which supports people with developmental disabilities, I’ve seen firsthand how Medicaid does more than make life better.

A year ago, Karen — a Springfield resident with a developmental disability — lived in a small nursing-home room. With only a curtain for privacy, Karen was overweight, dependent on oxygen and having frequent life-threatening seizures. After she moved into an Easterseals community living home and started receiving Medicaid-funded services, Karen learned how to prepare healthy food and started taking daily walks. She has lost 80 pounds and no longer experiences seizures or requires oxygen. She has also made new friends, gained confidence and in the words of those who know her best, “blossomed.”

For Karen and millions of other Americans, Medicaid offers more than the chance to make life better. It makes life possible.

Wendy Sullivan


Easterseals Midwest

St. Louis

Jobs needed

A Sunday letter writer described a trip to Mexico to learn about the living conditions of auto workers there. I never really thought about how Mexicans who received our jobs lived.

The fact remains that we lost our jobs here in the United States, and they aren’t coming back. It doesn’t mean I don’t need my job just because someone lives worse than I do.

Kevin Cation

La Harpe, Kan.

Fountain name

I completely agree with Steve Rose that J.C. Nichols’ name should remain on the historic fountain on the Plaza. (June 24, 13A, “J.C. Nichols’ name belongs on iconic fountain”)

I once read a quote that applies to this situation: “If you deny the past, you’ll distort the future.”

Sara Colt

Mission Hills

Two failed parties

After reading The Star’s front-page June 26 article, “What’s the next stop in politics for (Jason) Kander?” I turned to the editorial page to find the commentary by Trudy Rubin, “Electoral lessons to learn from Macron’s victory in France.” (9A)

It made me wonder if The Star intentionally chose this day for both items to appear. They are a match made in heaven, or hell, depending on one’s political view.

Or, is a new party formed by moderates/centrists from Democrats, Republicans and independents a solution to the parties that have become so enmeshed in power struggles that they seldom accomplish anything worthwhile?

I, like most people I know, am disenchanted with both parties, which, instead of working for the people whose taxes pay them, work for lobbyists and big-money donors.

It is time for senators and representatives to come together for the good of the citizens of the United States and ignore our immature, ignorant, truth-free Twittering, money-hungry president, who apparently only wants the title, the power and the money that can be gained through his role.

Jennifer Randle

Overland Park