Contact:

Emma O’Brien

emma@kansasdems.org

January 14, 2022

 

TCJ EDITORIAL BOARD ECHOES GOV. KELLY’S CALL TO PUT POLITICS ASIDE, AXE THE FOOD TAX

TCJ: “We realize especially in today’s political climate it’s difficult for Republicans and Democrats to work together. There is some hope that the leaders in our state can work together, however. Especially Gov. Laura Kelly, a Democrat, and her Republicans colleagues” 

Topeka, KS — Both parties must come together to eliminate Kansas’ high food sales tax, says the Topeka Capital-Journal Editorial Board. As a state with one of the highest food sales taxes in the nation, Governor Kelly has taken a bipartisan approach to Axe the Food Tax. If signed into law, this bill would save Kansans an average of $500 every year; money that could be better spent on typical household costs like childcare, catching dinner and a movie, or saved for a rainy day.

At Governor Kelly’s fourth State of the State Address, she called on the state legislature to deliver a clean bill to Axe the Food Tax by January 29, Kansas Day. A clean bill – meaning no tax loopholes or corporate giveaways – just eliminating the state’s high tax on groceries. In contrast, when Derek Schmidt was asked directly, he refused to make a solid commitment to supporting a clean bill.

Read more from the Topeka Capital-Journal here or below: 

Political intrigue isn’t something limited to television, movies, novels or Washington.

There’s plenty to go around in the Kansas Statehouse here in Topeka.

The last session left multiple people on both sides of the aisle raising eyebrows. There were stunts and moves and countermoves.

It’ll be interesting to see how it plays out in this legislative session. After all, we’re coming up on another election. Those do bring out interesting moves from political operatives.

We realize especially in today’s political climate it’s difficult for Republicans and Democrats to work together. There is some hope that the leaders in our state can work together, however. Especially Gov. Laura Kelly, a Democrat, and her Republicans colleagues.

Kelly and her likely Republican opponent, Attorney General Derek Schmidt, both support addressing the state’s high food sales tax.

The Topeka Capital-Journal’s Andrew Bahl reports in October, Kelly called on lawmakers to cut the state’s food sales tax, one of the highest in the nation, in a bid to deliver on a campaign promise during her 2018 run. But Schmidt has matched that proposal, endorsing a move to repeal or cut the food sales tax shortly before Kelly’s planned announcement. And really the people who benefit most from this will be everyday Kansans.

We’d encourage those in the Statehouse to work together to make this happen — and not to score political points. Forget the November election. Do it because it’s the right thing to do. The right thing for Kansas.

“I think some strategists just have to be careful about overanalyzing it in that sense,” Washburn University political science professor Bob Beatty told Bahl. “Sometimes the most straightforward thing, cooperation, can be good for both parties.”

We know there are other issues the state is facing that could use some bipartisan support. Think about how cooperation could lead to improvements in our state’s schools, roads and more. We hope the politicos and power brokers keep that in mind. We believe it can be achieved and that sometimes compromise can help move things along or even make them stronger.

We hope with this session leaders can explore ways to work together. Who knows, maybe this will be the start of a more cooperative spirit in Kansas politics. That would be refreshing. It might also lead to more Kansans taking an interest in what’s going on in Topeka. That would be nice.

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