Leavenworth County Republicans – Pioneer Pathways – January 2011

Comments from the Chairman

I hope that everyone had a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. This past year was filled with excitement, thrills and some disappointments for many of us who were involved in political campaigns and the elections. Now that the elections are over, it is at this time that many people look ahead toward the 2012 General Elections and think that we have a year to relax before the next campaign season starts.

This is not the case. We have the off-year (April) elections just around the corner. It is these elections that will determine who becomes our city commissioners/council members and school board members.

When we think of the April elections and how they impact us, we have the think about the decisions that these individuals will be making. Many issues that impact each one of us directly are decided by these boards/commissions and, for the most part, go un-noticed by most citizens. Decisions are made here, by a few people, with results that impact many, if not all the citizens of the cities/county.

One such issue was recently brought to my attention and deserves to be mentioned:

I have an item of interest I would like to bring to your attention. I believe it deserves forthright concern and action. I will describe the event that occurred locally two weeks ago. From my perspective, the following type of thing undermines everything that we try to do to restore a traditionalist, conservative nation through the vote. So I will begin.

I received a phone call from a neighbor that the Lansing City Council was a holding its monthly meeting. One of the topics of the meeting was the building of (more) low income housing in Lansing, near the elementary school. The meeting was chaired by the Lansing mayor. This would have been a “done deal” had some of us not shown up at the meeting and vented our complete opposition to this. When asked why the council was moving ahead with this action, no one on the council could answer why this was a good thing for Lansing. What did come to light was that an investment group from Kansas City, Missouri, had bought the property with the intent to get Federal tax credits etc to develop a 48 unit low income housing project in our backyard unbeknownst to us, the citizenry. These modern day Carpet Baggers would build low income housing in our community, get the money, and remain absentee landlords, at best, while we get stuck with the bill, greater crowding of our schools, higher crime, and an influx of a population group that is not wanted. The reason they are not wanted is that they are not coming here under their own volition to add to the community but to come here because of a subsidized environment for them.

Again, the question was asked, why are we doing this? Is it to turn Lansing into a smaller version of Kansas City or New York or LA? We already have those things. We do not need it here. What’s wrong with keeping our small town and rural areas in tact? What is the purpose of destroying this? Again, no answer. Finally, the distinction was made to the council, that as private property owners, we have a right to say who comes here and who doesn’t. If our rights as private property owners are negated by the government, then we don’t really have any rights. The right to vote doesn’t mean anything. (In essence, modern day Carpet Baggers come into our locale with the intent to buy property to line their pockets – charity is not their primary concern – which leaves the community holding the bag. These people do not come to this community to buy a farm or home or business and become members of the community.) On the contrary they come here to make a profit and bring in populations and problems we don’t want but are unaware of until it is too late.

Why is it that more Lansing locals did not know about this? After all, notification did go out to the public – for those of who lived within two hundred feet of the building site! Are you kidding! This is laughable if it weren’t serious. We cannot tolerate a government that hides behind legalities and procedures in what is becoming life and death for our communities.

I will end here as I am short for time, but you get the gist of what I’m saying. Real estate developers and local politicians, knowingly or unknowingly, have the ability to undermine God, family, freedom, and Kansas without the populace knowing what happened until it has already happened. And this is done without voting. We do not need unlimited development at the continued cost of our culture and civilization for 30 pieces of silver. This needs to stop. (Joe Boarman)

It is for reasons such as this and many more that go un-noticed, that make it imperative that citizens stay aware and informed of what our elected officials are doing, at all levels of government.

John Bradford

Connie’s Corner by: Rep. Connie O’Brien
I hope everyone had a blessed and joyous Christmas. The New Year is here and I’m looking forward to the swearing in ceremony that marks the official beginning of the 2011 legislative session. On January 10th, newly elected members of Kansas government will take their oath of office. Governor Elect Sam Brownback, Lt. Governor Jeff Colyer and all of our statewide elected officials, all Republicans, will be sworn in at 11:00 am; House members will take their oath of office, in groups of ten, in the House chambers at 2:00 pm. This year, Owen Donohoe and I will be joined by Representative Elect Jana Goodman, who now represents the 41st District. That seat was previously held by Democrat Marti Crow. It will be great having Jana join Owen and me as a member of the Republican Delegation from Leavenworth County. Republicans now hold three of the four representative seats in Leavenworth County.

I plan to attend the Governor’s Inaugural Ball on January 8th. This will be the first Inaugural Ball I have ever attended. I feel the need to celebrate our many victories, here in Kansas and also the huge gains we’ve made in Washington. The election of 2010 resulted in the biggest change of power in Congress since the election of 1946. The winds of change are at our backs and now it becomes absolutely necessary that we deliver on our campaign promises if we hope to keep that momentum working for us.

I am truly looking forward to the 2011 session for several reasons. House Republicans have again elected some great people to House leadership positions. I’m glad to have Representative Mike O’Neal return as House Speaker. Mike fought hard last session to promote sound fiscal and social policies only to see his efforts fail because a few progressive Republicans sided with Democrats and their failed policies. This session will be very different because the voters soundly rejected those policies which promoted increases in taxes and spending. We now have 92 Republican House members. Although a few progressive-minded Republicans did return, they are very much in the minority. House Democrats lost 16 seats and their numbers have declined to the point where there are just 33 Democrats in the House. If our newly elected Republican legislators can lead the way to sound fiscal and social policies we may see even fewer House Democrats after the elections in 2012. I am excited because now we have the conservative numbers in the House to accomplish what eluded us during the 2010 session, and we have a Governor who will support sound fiscal and social policies.

Here are my Committee Assignments for 2011:

- Elections Committee – Mondays and Wednesdays (9:00 am)

I am sure we will see legislation designed to eliminate any opportunity for voter fraud. Legislation requiring photo ID when voting in person and proof of citizenship when registering to vote will be debated.

- Veterans / Military Affairs and Home Land Security Committee – Tuesdays and Thursdays (9:00 am)

I was honored to be appointed by Speaker O’Neal as the Vice Chair of the Veterans, Military and Home Land Security Committee. I am a military mom. My son Shaun will be deployed this year to the horn of Africa. I have a grandson currently stationed at Fort Knox. I have two sons-in-law, Marines, who are Iraq veterans. My dad was a WW II veteran and my husband Ed, a military veteran himself, Ed’s dad served in WW I. I believe my family’s military history and experience has given me the knowledge and perspective to be an effective VC on this committee.

- Federal and State Affairs – Daily (1:30 pm)

I served on this committee in 2009 to 2010. It is one of my favorite committees because you never know exactly what you will be looking into from day to day. I’m sure that many of the good pieces of legislation that managed to pass out of this committee, legislation that was successful in passing the House and Senate only to be vetoed by Governor Sebelius or her successor, Mark Parkinson, will receive the signature of Governor Brownback and become law. Legislators are expected to revisit concealed-carry legislation, with the intent to loosen regulations. Legislation regulating abortion procedures and reporting will be passed again and signed.

- Education Budget Committee – Daily (3:30 pm)

This will be real interesting. With the economy still struggling, legislators will be looking for areas where they can cut spending. I believe that standardizing budget reports may be helpful in identifying areas where education funds could be used more efficiently. I’m not going to venture any predictions on what may be discussed or come out of this committee. There is no doubt that K-12 and higher education, which consists of 68% of all general revenue expenditures, will be thoroughly scrutinized.

If you happen to be up at the Capitol, my House seat is number 87 and my office will be in room 165-b, West. I am happy to say that I’ll be sharing that office with Representative Kasha Kelly. Kasha is a fiscal and social conservative and judging by her voting record we should get along wonderfully.

I’ll soon have my new office phone number, until then you can contact me by going to my web site at www.connieobrien.net or e-mail me at connie@connieobrien.net

Thank You for giving me this opportunity to serve. May God bless us and Kansas abundantly.

Connie

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