Here I mean "state" as in government in general--not the state of Kansas, which on the whole does better than most others. Still, the Sunflower State is not exempt from the folly of the bureaucracy. (See the fight over school funding. See STAR bonds.)
So, K-State President Kirk Schulz is set to sail to Washington State University. To liberals, Schulz is leaving Kansas because we don't spend enough on higher education. This is always a theme with these folks. If anyone packs up and leaves the state, it's because government wasn't throwing enough money their way. Reasonable people might infer that perhaps Schulz is leaving Kansas because his EMAW was never very strong. He had no ties to K-State, other than being named its President.
Sometimes, people leave jobs because a better opportunity arises. Sometimes, people leave jobs because they want to be closer to home. Sometimes, people leave jobs because their EMAW is weak. Sometimes they leave jobs because they want their new employer to provide them a house on campus and a condo in Seattle. Shamefully, in an act unbecoming a person in such a position, Schulz has decided to play the political game. (As an aside, please read the truth about Kansas higher education funding here.)
Now it's up to the Kansas Board of Regents to choose Schulz's replacement. And this is the part that's really a joke: the members of the Board of Regents, which oversees the state university system, are appointed by Gov. Sam Brownback, and there's speculation that Brownback wants the top job at K-State. (Side note: Brownback does not have a future in comedy. His terrible joke about legendary Head Football Coach Bill Snyder in the Cap-J was just awful.)
Brownback is definitely qualified -- well, as qualified as anyone ever is in these sorts of things. (Don't get me started on how the bureaucracy is packed with political donors and department heads whose vast experience is an early endorsement in a heated political campaign. Yeah, former HHS Secretary, Kathleen Sebelius, I'm looking at you.)
It would leave a bad taste in my mouth if the political donor and activists that sit on the Board of Regents, appointed by Brownback, offered Brownback the top job at K-State. Appearances matter. Again, Brownback is qualified. He's run a larger bureaucracy than Kansas State University. He's a graduate and former student body president of the university, so his EMAW is strong, which should please many alumni. And running for office requires constantly asking for money, just like being a university president.
And there are some major advantages to such a hire that liberals should cheer. (They're too angry and nasty so they won't, but they should.) For example, who better to advocate for more money from the Kansas taxpayers than the guy who cut taxes. The field day liberals could have with such a hire would last decades. Of course, then libs wouldn't have Brownback to kick around in Topeka anymore, and that would surely be a disappointment. Every Kansas liberal needs a boogeyman, and today's Kansas Dems choose Brownback or Kris Kobach.
A political hire isn't without precedence. Former Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels now heads Purdue. Closer to home, University Oklahoma President is David Boren, a former Governor and U.S. Senator.