As voters in the Kansas’ 3rd Congressional District prepare for Election Day in November, they will be looking for the candidate who puts the interests of our district first. Recently, Star columnist Steve Rose wrote a piece sharing his thoughts on the choice in this election. Rose presented this as a tough decision, but it’s an easy one for me. Voters should re-elect Rep. Kevin Yoder.
I’ve known Kevin for 13 years. We served and closely worked together in the Kansas House of Representatives, always striving to ensure the well being of our constituents. His intellect and problem-solving approach quickly led him to leadership positions in Topeka, and have done the same in Washington. His role in Congress as an influential policymaker should not be understated, and it’s important to note that his opponent would not hold such clout.
Kevin has used his influence to stand up for all of us on important issues. He’s a leader on securing life-saving medical research at the National Institutes of Health. Those research dollars, which pay for efforts to find cures for diseases such as cancer and Alzheimer’s, flow directly to the University of Kansas right here in our community.
He’s been an advocate for women and children. He’s successfully defended the Violence Against Women Act program from budget cuts proposed by the president. He’s consistently prioritized educational opportunities for our next generation by increasing federal funding for Head Start, TRIO student services, Pell grants and other education programs by billions of dollars.
Yes, he does support the Trump administration when he believes it’s right. Thanks to his efforts, we have the lowest unemployment rate in a generation. Incomes for middle-class families are at their highest point ever, and our troops are getting their biggest pay raise in a decade.
But there’s also no doubt Kevin has shown that he’s willing to go against party leaders when he thinks they are wrong. When he learned the extent to which children were being separated from their parents at the southern border, he used his role as chair of a subcommittee responsible for homeland security funding to influence the administration to halt the practice. He worked with Democrats on his committee, writing bipartisan legislation to prevent those separations and demand that the administration reunite separated families.
Though he may receive criticism from either extreme for trying to forge compromise, his approach is meaningful to me. As a moderate Republican who has represented Prairie Village in the Kansas Senate in Topeka, and as someone who voted for Kevin’s Democratic predecessor, Dennis Moore, I value independent thinking.
Kevin’s first focus is always on helping people in our district. He and his staff work tirelessly on constituent services, just as Moore did. His reputation for helping constituents with whatever they may need is sterling. From veterans who need help at the VA, to seniors having trouble navigating Medicare, to students hoping to attend our military academies, everyone in this district knows they can count on Kevin to help.
Kevin’s opponent, Sharice Davids, would not be a Dennis Moore. In her own words, she does not consider herself to be a moderate Democrat.
I understand the frustrations that voters like myself might have about Washington right now. But taking out those frustrations by voting for someone who espouses policies such as severely curtailing Immigration and Customs Enforcement and implementing a health care system more like European ones is the wrong way to go.
Kevin understands the needs of our district, and he knows the people who live here. He is the only candidate who will put his constituents first, and as our congressman, he has a proven record of doing so. I look forward to voting for him this November, to send him back to Congress where he will continue to be our strongest, most dedicated advocate.
Kay Wolf has served in the Kansas Senate, the Kansas House of Representatives and on the Prairie Village City Council.