On March 22 the Kansas House of Representatives heard HB2292. This is the bill where Representative Grosserode took a comprehensive and outstanding bill (the “old” 2292) and turned it into a “do nothing” bill. (The “new” 2292.) There were many amendments heard. One of them was our amendment to replace the “new” 2292 with HB2676 and add an amendment addressing textbooks and AP/IB. If you’ll recall, the bill that we revised at the start of this session was 2676 and then it turned into 2292 (“old”).
Representative Houser took up the cause on the floor for this amendment and presented it. His willingness and professionalism in doing so is something we will not soon forget and are quite grateful for. We thank him and hope you will too.
Other representatives who voted “yea” for the 2676 amendment are Barton, B. Carpenter, Corbet, Davis, DeGraff, Dove, Fronfelter, Garber, Huebert, Hutchins, K. Jones, Kahrs, Kelley, Kelly, Lunn, Macheers, Osterman, Pauls, Peck, Read, Rhoades, Rubin, Scapa, Sutton, Weber, and Whitmer. Don’t be lulled or fooled here. Some of these people are the same people who voted to gut a good common core repeal five days earlier like Hutchins, Jones, Lunn, Machers, and Rhoades.
Despite Representative Houser’s efforts, the amendment, like all the other amendments presented, failed.
It is worth noting that there are a number of so-called conservatives who either sponsored the “old” 2292 or who voted to pass it out of the House Ed committee, but who subsequently failed to support (either by a “nay” vote or by not voting at all) the 2676 amendment that Representative Houser offered on our behalf. Speaker Merrick, Speaker Pro Tem Mast, Chairman Highland, Representatives Bradford, Bruchman, Estes, Hedke, Vickrey, Kiergerl, Clays, D. Jones, O’Brien, Goico, R. Powell, Rahjes, Seiwert, and Grosserode all failed to support the 2676 amendment.
When it came time to vote on the “new” 2292, Grosserode’s eleventh hour single paragraph “do nothing” bill, it too failed, despite the support of many of these same people as well as others.
From listening and watching the entire proceedings yesterday, it is clear that many of our elected representatives do not understand what is at stake. A number of democrats stepped up to oppose all parts of the repeal common core proceedings and offered their same, old, and flat out wrong ideas about common core and what is at stake. Very few so-called republicans stepped up to the podium to refute those claims or offer support of the 2676 amendment. For the most part, this caucus folded.
It is clear that leadership provided the grassroots, the parents, the people of Kansas, nothing more than a dog and pony show. They want it to appear that they “really tried hard” this time, but the truth is, there wasn’t much more from them than deception and agenda in an election year. It was like watching D.C. unfold and descend upon Topeka. Despite the thousands and thousands of you who have sent emails, signed petitions, made calls, showed up at rallies, and much more, you were absolutely not heard yesterday. You were barely even represented. If that doesn’t fire you up to replace representatives who act this way I don’t know what will. All House seats are up this year…opportunity is brewing.
So, the questions are thus: What do you want to do? What are you prepared to do? How are you going to do it?
We know exactly what we are going to do. The first two things that we are going to are:
1. Seek out truly conservative candidates to run against incumbent KS BOE members and many of these so-called republican representatives who miserably failed you, me, and our kids yesterday.
2. Continue to speak out. We will continue to inform people–all people–who these elected officials are and what they have done or failed to do.
The only way this is going to get solved is if we grow our numbers and get even louder and we find people to represent us who actually LISTEN to what we want and then do as we ask of them.
Thank you for YOUR support this session!