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Brownback Says He Will Work With New Kansas Legislature

Stephen Koranda
KPR/File photo

The election next week seems likely to shift the ideology of the Kansas Legislature. It appears there could be more Democrats and centrist-leaning Republicans. Stephen Koranda reports on how the governor and these new lawmakers might get along.

Gov. Sam Brownback told reporters this week that he would work with the new Kansas legislature, even if it’s ideologically different from now. Brownback points out how he worked with the previous moderate leadership in the Senate several years ago.

“We passed some very significant legislation then. The KPERS reform was passed then, the tax bill was passed then,” Brownback said.

Some lawmakers may want to amend those tax cuts. Republican Rep. Russ Jennings, who’s planning to run for speaker, told KCUR's Statehouse Blend podcast that he’s willing to butt heads with Brownback on taxes. He pointed out how the governor has said in the past that lawmakers have the power of the purse.

“And a piece of the budget process is the revenue sufficient to meet those priorities as articulated through the budget by the Legislature,” Jennings said.

Lawmakers know they have a lot on their plates for the next legislative session. Leaders have already extended it from 90 to 100 days.

Stephen Koranda is Statehouse reporter for Kansas Public Radio and the Kansas News Service, a collaboration of KCUR, KMUW, Kansas Public Radio and High Plains Radio covering health, education and politics.