Kansas GOP Insider (wannabe): Credit... or Blame?

Monday, June 27, 2016

Credit... or Blame?

There's a tiny skirmish happening deep in the Kansas Republican backwoods. The so-called moderates and actual conservatives are clashing over which faction gets credit for the school funding legislation passed during the special session.

I'm going to clear things up, but first, I want to make clear: I don't think voters gives a rat's behind about who authored this legislative attempt to keep schools open. (Again, they never closed. The Court's threat was an empty one, yada, yada, yada, ad naseum, but here we are.) 

Potential voters are checked out in a way that should be frightening. Seriously, almost no one is paying a lick of attention. Voters barely registered the threat of schools closing, and the very few (who weren't members of teacher's unions) who did, placed blame correctly and recognized Court overreach. Most voters never thought schools would actually close, if it registered at all. Schools won't close, and so, primary voters will go to the polls on Aug. 2 indifferent to the drama that occurred last week in Topeka.

It's comical that Melissa Rooker was knocking down people in a rush to get to television cameras to explain how she saved the schools. That takes an amount of hubris that should make decent people cringe, especially since Rooker had absolutely nothing to do with negotiating a solution save for voting in the affirmative, as did the vast majority of all legislators. (I have great respect for the legislators who voted against this abomination. It was a tiny number.)

Here's what went down: Prior to Friday's session, many school districts, including Blue Valley and Olathe, appeared to sign off on a Ryckman drafted plan to give every district a half of a percent cut and back fill some other funding using a variety of means. Between Thursday night and Friday morning, school officials back tracked. (I have to believe it was because their so-called moderate allies waffled at the idea of a political loss.) So, the House sat around for hours while Ryckman, Ty Masterson, Jim Denning, and some school superintendents negotiated a funding policy with the taxpayer funded schools for fair funding lawyer. For all I know, Rooker and the other "mods" were out sipping cocktails at the Lazy Toad. I don't know where they were, but I can tell you without reservation that they weren't in that room when this deal, which eventually passed both chambers, was negotiated. 

Following the bill's passage, some school officials and Johnson County Republicans sans the so-called moderates staged a press conference. This victory lap was designed to take political credit for "keeping the schools open." Rumor has it, the Governor wanted to take part in this press conference. He was brutally rebuffed. (Seriously, give him a hug, Friends of Brownback). 

Meanwhile, somehow that night and the following few days, Rooker and the mods were chasing down television cameras seeking recognition for their deft negotiating skills. I never actually saw footage of the JoCo legislators press conference, but I saw lots and lots of Rooker.  

As a completely misinformed Star editorial proves, conservatives will never receive credit for out-liberaling Democrats. (I am still trying to figure out why conservatives would want to, but it appears that's our plan.)

This legislation is a total loser, in my humble opinion. Rather than battling for credit, everyone involved should be attempting to place blame at the feet of others. I think that's going to become quite apparent circa September, when the school districts that promised to lay off suing over equity will be before the Kangaroo Supremes arguing about adequacy. 


  1. This is right on. The "take-credit-place-blame" camera hogs should be called out at every opportunity

  2. Success has many mothers; failure is an orphan. I thought it interesting that the mainstream media took Rooker's claims at face value, unquestioned, and reported it as fact -- while at the same time identifying her as "moderate" Republican. We all know what that means. The only time the media praises a Republican is when a Republican acts/votes like a Democrat.