January 9, 2018
KANSAS LAWMAKERS KICK OFF 2018 SESSION
Peter Hancock, LJWorld.com
The 2018 Kansas legislative session officially got underway Monday, with issues like school finance, child welfare reform and balancing the state budget expected to dominate much of lawmakers' time.
The Legislature faces a looming deadline to act before April 30 to address a recent Kansas Supreme Court ruling that said current funding for K-12 education is unconstitutional because it is both inadequate and inequitable.
In addition, the state faces a mountain of problems within its child welfare system.
But even with the large income tax increase lawmakers passed last year, and the fact that monthly revenues have been exceeding projections the last several months, the state still faces a tight budget situation.
"We did most of the heavy lifting last year on tax policy and school finance, and we have a little bit more work to do on school finance," he told reporters. "We got a great start."
Read more here.
KANSAS CAN LEAD IN BETTER DIRECTION
Anne Welsbacher, The Wichita Eagle
Anybody questioning the old platitude that "all politics is local" need look no further than this state. Kansas is the canary in the nation's coal mine when it comes to experimenting with bad policies. A trifecta of Topeka policy changes now thriving in Washington, D.C., serves as a stark illustration.
Voter suppression: The 2011 so-called SAFE Act, masterminded by Secretary Kris Kobach and initiated in 2013, required that Kansans provide proof of citizenship to register to vote.
Tax cuts: Following decades of mostly balanced expense-revenue books, Kansas revenue dropped sharply in 2013, when Gov. Sam Brownback introduced his infamous "experiment".
Secrecy: A Kansas City Star series investigated what it said may be "the most secretive state in the country".
Kansas, once again a harbinger of things to come, recently has taken progressive steps forward in a country that had otherwise boomeranged back to 19th Century policies.
Read more here.
THE STAR TO SPONSOR TOWN HALL ON SEARCH FOR OPENNESS AFTER SECRET KANSAS SERIES
Laura Bauer & Judy Thomas, Kansas City Star
The transparency conversation must continue. Change in Topeka is crucial. The secrecy in Kansas government must end.
Those were among the many responses The Star received after its November series revealing that Kansas has one of the darkest state governments in the nation. Its secrecy permeates nearly every aspect of service, the investigation found.That's why The Star is holding a town hall at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 11, in Olathe City Hall, 100 E. Santa Fe St. Several lawmakers and an attorney who specializes in Kansas open records laws will make up the panel. It's the public's opportunity to have a say. If you would like to attend, please fill out the form here.
A Kansas City reader said it was tough to read about the secrecy throughout government. But it's essential, she said.
"It is important that we understand and have our eyes opened to the truths of government in our region."
Read more here.

GUNS, SCHOOLS, TAXES: HOW KANSAS LAWMAKERS COULD CHANGE YOUR LIFE IN 2018
Jonathan Shorman, The Wichita Eagle
This is an election year, and campaigns for governor are already under way. Gov. Sam Brownback's stalled nomination to be ambassador at large for international religious freedom means he will deliver a State of the State speech on Jan. 9, then release a spending plan the next day.
After that, the 2018 session begins in earnest. Here's five ways the Legislature and the governor could affect you and the people in your life this year:  Your taxes, y our schools, y our elderly parents and people you know with disabilities, y our guns, y our roads.  Read more here .
K-12 FINANCE DEBATE LOOMS LARGE IN 2018
Allison Kit, The Garden City Telegram
When the Kansas Legislature returns Monday for the 2018 session, perhaps
no issue will loom as large as the need
to pass a new K-12 school finance plan - and quickly.
The Supreme Court in October again ruled Kansas' school finance plan unconstitutional in the ongoing Gannon lawsuit after legislators worked into the summer on the formula that added $195 million this year and would add $292 million next. Legislators overrode Gov. Sam Brownback's veto to pass a tax increase and balance the state budget.
This year, they won't have that much time.  Read more here .
SESSION 2018: WHAT KANSAS LEGISLATORS MIGHT DO ABOUT HEALTH POLICY
Allison Kite, cjonline.com
Despite an influx of Democrats and moderate Republicans in 2016, Kansas legislators came up just short last year of expanding the state's Medicaid program. This year, they could consider it again along with a host of other wellness priorities, like increased funding for mental health services.
Medicaid expansion and mental health spending are priorities for some legislators concerned with access to medicine and mental health services in the state's more remote areas. Kansas health agencies are also pushing forward on contracts to run the state's Medicaid program and a plan to privatize a state psychiatric hospital.
"We will continue to push to expand KanCare as long as we have the ability to bring our tax dollars back to the state," said David Jordan, executive director for the Alliance for a Healthy Kansas.  Read more here .
DOCTORS AGREE: EXPAND KANCARE NOW
Over 200 Kansas doctors joined us in support of expanding KanCare because they know it's the right thing to do. It is time for the Kansas Legislature to expand KanCare. Read more here.
REPUBLICANS ARE TRYING TO KILL A KEY VOTING RIGHTS LAW
Ari Berman, Mother Jones
Thirty years ago, the United States had a big problem. Barely half of eligible voters had cast a ballot in the 1988 presidential election-the lowest voter turnout since the 1920s. In an effort to increase participation, Democrats in Congress-backed by a few Republicans- drafted the National Voter Registration Act, a bill that would require states to allow voters to register at Department of Motor Vehicle offices and other public agencies.
The "motor voter" law, as it became known, was an immediate success. In its first year in effect, more than 30 million people registered or updated their registrations through the NVRA. Roughly 16 million people per year have used it to register ever since.
But in recent years, Republicans have sought to gut the law. "We're seeing a coming fight over how voter rolls are maintained," says Dale Ho, director of the ACLU's Voting Rights Project. "It's a new front in the voter suppression battles."  Read more here .
TRUMP IS NOT ENDING KOBACH'S RACIST VOTER PURGE SCHEME, HE'S PUTTING IT ON STEROIDS
BY MOVING IT TO HOMELAND SECURITY
Greg Palast, Journalism & Film
Don't be fooled by news of Trump's Executive Order dissolving the so-called Commission on Election Integrity. Trump is not ending the Kris Kobach scheme to attack, he's moving it into Homeland Security as per Kobach's original plan.  
Kobach gloats that Homeland Security is exempt from Freedom of Information Act demands and public hearings - that was part of his original plan given to Trump. 
Kobach claims Homeland Security can REQUIRE states to turn over voter records and can secretly gather lists of "double" or "alien" voters - this is Kobach's "Crosscheck" on steroids.  Read more here.
HIS 'VOTER FRAUD' PANEL FOLDED, KRIS KOBACH TURNS
HIS ATTENTION TO RUINING HIS OWN STATE
Ed Kilgore, New York Magazine
You'd figure that the president's decision to fold his Advisory Commission on Election Integrity would make Kris Kobach, the vice-chairman and leading light of that "voter fraud" inquisition, the unhappiest camper around. But he has a good use for whatever free time Trump's action gave him. He's running for governor of Kansas, the obvious next step in his political ascent, particularly after he did not secure a Trump cabinet post.  And although you'd figure Kansans would have had about enough of right-wing ideologues after the disastrous administration of Sam Brownback, Kobach is generally considered the gubernatorial front-runner.
He will probably gain a considerable chunk of Brownback's following, since he's vowed to reverse the tax increases that a Republican-controlled legislature enacted (overriding the governor's veto) to resolve a fiscal crisis last summer.
Read more here.
ARE YOU REGISTERED TO VOTE?
DO YOU NOW THE KANSAS VOTING LAWS? ARE YOU A NEW VOTER IN KANSAS?
We're here to help! It's not as confusing  as you might think.
 
To get you started, here is a list of helpful websites:  kssos.orggotvoterid.comvoteks.org
 
Qualifications to become a registered voter:
  1. There is no length of residency requirement in Kansas, but one must register 21 days before the election and be a resident at the time of registration.
  2. Must be 18 years of age or older.
  3. Must be a U.S. Citizen and show proof with a birth certificate, passport, naturalization papers, or any number of other official forms outlined on the websites previously listed.
Must show proof of residence by showing a driver's license or non-driver's license number or any one of a number of state identification cards.

WOMEN'S MARCHES AROUND THE STATE
SATURDAY, JANUARY 20, 2018

Hosted by Women's March Air Capital Wichita Kansas
MARCH TO THE POLLS - WICHITA
FROM 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Rally at City Hall, 455 N. Main Street, Wichita

Last year, we came together making our voices heard - that Women's rights are human rights, to fight for equality and stand up to environmental & social injustices.
We have a number of incredible Women speakers and live music. Help spread the word. Follow us on Facebook.

AFTER THE MARCH LUNCH, MEET & GREET
Hosted by the Fusion Restaurant & Women's March Air Capital
SATURDAY, JANUARY 20, 2-4:30pm
The Fusion Restaurant,  1812 W. Douglas, Wichita

Come to The Fusion Restaurant, 1812 W. Douglas Ave, after we march to the polls to fill up on warm delicious Fusion food. Meet and greet fellow march attendees, candidates, and members of our wonderful community!
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WE MARCH AGAIN - PITTSBURG
FROM 1:00 - 3:00 PM
Pritchett Pavilion, 2nd & Broadway, Pittsburg

The theme of our march is   #MeToo   to show solidarity with survivors of sexual harassment and sexual assault.
We will meet at PSU near the flagpole in front of Russ Hall and march (on the sidewalk) to Pritchett Pavilion at 2nd and Broadway, where we will have a rally with speakers and (hopefully) music. If you are unable to walk that far, please join us at the Pavilion for the rally.
Get creative with your signs!
We're looking forward to seeing you all there!
Visit our Facebook page here.
___________________

STILL MARCHING - LAWRENCE
FROM 1:00 - 3:00 PM
South Park, 1141 Massachusetts St., Lawrence

A sister march in solidarity with the Women's March 2018 in Washington, D.C., Visit Facebook page here.
___________________

Our goal this year is to encourage  and ensure participation in the 2018 mid term elections.

HEAR OUR VOICE.
NOW HEAR OUR VOTE!

Hosted by Women's March on Washington - Kansas
POWER TO THE POLLS:
WOMEN'S MARCH ON TOPEKA
SUNDAY, JANUARY 21, 1-3 PM
State Capitol Building
SW 8th & SW Van Buren, Topeka

Speakers to be announced soon

The Power to the Polls Women's March on Kansas is planned for Sunday, January 21, 2018, from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Speakers will include KS legislators and political candidates.

The march will mirror the National Women's March focus to "register new voters and harness our collective energy to advocate for policies and candidates that reflect our values and collaborate with our partners to elect more progressive
women candidates to office." Visit the Facebook page here.
RUNNING FOR OFFICE 101: CAMPAIGN SCHOOL LED BY KATE COYNE-MCCOY
Hosted by Kansas Chapter NASW
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 3, 9am - 4pm
Sylvester Powerll Jr. Community Center
6200 Marway St., Mission, KS
$25 Tickets available at squareup.com.

If you have ever heard thought about running for office
 and wondered what is all involved to run a campaign
 this is the workshop for you. 

Kansas Chapter of NASW has joined together with the Greater Kansas City Women's Political Caucus to have a training led by Kate Coyne-McCoy, MSW. Kate is a social worker, community organizer, and former candidate for congress. She is also the lead faculty at the Nancy Humpreys Institute for Political Social Work. 
This workshop led by Kate Coyne-McCoy, President of Campaign Fixer who has trained more than 8,000 candidates and assisted with hundreds of successful elections. She designed and implemented candidate trainings for Emily's List and for Harvard University while serving as the Fellow at the Women's Public Policy Program.
Visit Facebook page here.






In 2016, Women for Kansas was widely credited with helping return the state to moderation. We registered voters, cast our own votes, ran for office, campaigned for candidates, kept informed via News We Can Use, and participated in Women for Kansas Chapter meetings across the state.
 
2018 will be an even greater challenge...so many offices, so many candidates: governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general, treasurer, insurance commissioner, 8 KS Court of Appeals Judges, 2 U.S. Senators, 4 U.S. House members, 125 Kansas House members and 1 state senator (13th district). 
 
It could seem daunting without Women for Kansas leading the way, keeping you informed on the issues and candidates. Our journey to continued moderation, however, rests on your support. And now, there are 2 ways to give:
 
Women for Kansas Civic Group:
A 501(c)(4) nonprofit, the Civic Group is our primary and membership organization, providing support for our staff and advocacy activities. It is the most flexible funding source and the best choice for donors. Donations are not tax deductible but are the most flexible way to support our advocacy work.To use PayPal, click here.
 
Women for Kansas:
A 501(c)(3) nonprofit, W4K engages in non-partisan, non-political educational activities on behalf of our shared values. Donations to Women for Kansas are tax deductible. To use PayPal, click here.
 
To donate by check:  address your envelope (and make your check payable to) either Women for Kansas Civic Group or Women for Kansas. Send to P.O. Box 8774, Wichita, KS 67208.

Annual Support levels:  Basic $75, Contributing $150, Sustaining $500 & above, and student $30.
WHO IS RUNNING FOR KANSAS GOVERNOR
Candi Bolden, The Wichita Eagle
The 2018 campaign for Kansas governor is producing a large amount of candidates. Here are the Republican, Democratic, and Independent candidates:  Laura Kelly, Greg Orman, Richard Kloos, Josh Svaty, Arden Anderson, Carl Brewer, Jim Barnett, Ed O'Malley, Ken Seltzer, Wink Hartman, Mark Hutton, Jeff Colyer, and Kris Kobach.  Watch here .
WHAT'S AHEAD FOR THE 2018 KANSAS LEGISLATURE?
Kaye McIntyre, KPR
This week on KPR Presents: Kansas lawmakers kick off their 2018 session this week. KPR's Kaye McIntyre talks with Jonathan Shorman of the Wichita Eagle and Peter Hancock of the Lawrence Journal-World about what issues face the Kansas legislature in the months ahead.  Listen here .
WHY MED STUDENTS ARE DOING SIMULATIONS, AND WAYS TO STOP HARASSMENT IN KANSAS LEGISLATURE
Brian Ellison & Luke Martin, KCUR 89.3
The challenges of life in poverty are diverse, and can be hard to grasp for people who haven't lived it themselves. Today, we learn how future health care professionals are using poverty simulations to get a new perspective on what their poorest patients face daily. Then, find out how the Kansas City nonprofit Women's Foundation is helping the Kansas legislature confront what some call a culture of harassment in the capital.  Listen here .
VoteRunLead supports the aspirations of women who want to transform our country and democracy through their participation as leaders.  Visit  here .
AN APPLICATION THAT MAKES IT EASY TO PESTER YOUR CONGRESS MEMBER
Visit Countable here.
EFFORTS TO EXPAND MEDICAID IN KANSAS LIKELY TO CONTINUE
Jim McLean, kmuw 89.1
The head of a group pushing for Medicaid expansion in Kansas says his departure for a new job won't hinder the advocacy effort.  With David Jordan at the helm, the Alliance for a Healthy Kansas came within a few votes last session of overriding Gov. Sam Brownback's veto of a bill to broaden Medicaid eligibility.  Listen here .
SEE WHAT YOU'VE DONE!
Your belief in W4K and the work we do to elect and keep moderates in Topeka has created  14 W4K Chapters across the state!  Thousands of moderate voters thank you.  As you know, 2018 is a momentous election year, and we're looking for committed W4K members. 

If you're interested in being involved, contact a Chapter Leader. A complete list of Chapter Leaders and their contact information is available here.

If you're interested in forming a Chapter, contact Deanna Zitterkopf at beowulfprof@cox.net .
  
Thanks to the efforts of hundreds
of determined Women for Kansas,
2016 was the year we began turning the ship around. In the Senate, we picked up 10 moderate seats; in the House,  we added 28. Not quite a legislative majority but changed enough so that Brownback and his lemmings can no longer stream roll over us.
 
Up next: planning for the 2018 gubernatorial/statewide races.

With your support, Women for Kansas will again help lead the way. Our work, supported 100% by individual, private donations, now gives you 2 options:

Women for Kansas Civic Group
A 501(c)(4) nonprofit, the Civic Group
is our primary and membership organization, providing support for our staff and advocacy activities. It is the most flexible funding source and the best choice for donors.
Donations are not tax deductible
but are the most flexible way to support our advocacy work.

Women for Kansas
A 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, W4K engages in non-partisan, non-political educational activities on behalf of our shared values. Donations to Women for Kansas are tax deductible.

Basic support $75.00 year
Contributing support $150.00 year
Sustaining support $500.00 year
Student support $30.00 year

Mail your check to:
Women for Kansas Civic Group
( or) Women for Kansas
P.O. Box 8774
Wichita, Kansas 67208

Pay online with PayPal:
W4K Civic Group, click here.
Women for Kansas,  click here.

(You are not required to have a PayPal account).
THE KANSAS PEOPLE'S STATE OF THE STATE RALLY TO PRESENT DEMANDS TO THE KANSAS LEGISLATURE
Hosted by Kansas People's Agenda

JANUARY 10, 2018, 11:30 am
State Capitol Bldg.,
2 nd  Floor Rotunda
300 SW 10th St., Topeka

Contact Sarah Oglesby-Dunegan
at 720-339-6779 or email info@kansaspeoplesagenda.org.

Register and learn more at KansasPeoplesAgenda.org.

EXPAND KANCARE RALLY
IN OLATHE
SUN., JAN. 13, 10:00 am
Olathe Community Center
1205 E. Kansas City Rd., Olathe

EXPAND KANCARE RALLY
IN KANSAS CITY
SUN., JAN. 13, 2:00 pm
Donnelly College
608 N. 18th St., Kansas City

The Alliance for a Healthy Kansas and Expand Medicaid in Kansas NOW will host a Kancare Expansion Rally and we want you to be there! Our fight isn't over. Join us as we share the next steps we're taking to expand KanCare.

For more scheduled events, visit the website at   expandkancare.com/events.

SOCIAL HEALTH SERIES: CRIME AND SAFETY  
TUES., JANUARY 16, 5:30 PM
Roxy's Downtown, 412½ E. Douglas

Citizens and voters face monumental choices on issues that will define our future, and there is a great need for broader understanding of how what happens at the polls affects you.

That's why, in January of 2016, KMUW launched  Engage ICT: Democracy on TapThese monthly community conversations feature a panel of local experts and topics that touch your daily life. Always at Roxy's Downtown. Always free and open to all.  Get your questions answered at the next Engage ICT
This month's topic is Crime and Safety, and is the first event in our social health series. We'll discuss crime trends and how to make our community safer for everyone. Appetizers are provided.
Hosted by Women's March Air Capital Wichita and Wichita Orpheum Theatre
EQUAL MEANS EQUAL FILM SCREENING

FRIDAY, JANUARY 19, 7-9pm
Wichita Orpheum Theatre
200 N. Broadway St., Wichita
$8 ticket information available here .

Wichita Orpheum Theatre is thrilled to partner with Women's March --Air Capital -- Wichita Kansas for a screening of the documentary Equal Means Equal Friday, January 19. Tickets are $8 General Admission and go on sale at 10 a.m. on Friday, January 5. Visit the Orpheum for more information.
STATE GOVERNMENT: HOW TO GET INVOLVED IN KS
From tracking legislation, to contacting your state legislator or governor,
to viewing campaign contributions,
this article is  packed full of
useful information
EVERY  Kansan should know.
PDF of handout available here.

2017-2018 KANSAS ROSTER AND CONTACT INFORMATION
KS House of Representatives Roster
Kansas Senate Roster

NOT SURE WHO REPRESENTS YOU?  WE CAN HELP
Find your  U.S. State Senator
"The practice of democracy is not passed down  through the gene pool.
It must be taught  and learned anew by each generation of citizens."

Visit iCivics.org to learn more.
Follow Women for Kansas on Twitter  or Instagram,
@women_for_kansas. Like us on Facebook , and visit our website at www.WomenforKansas.org .
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