On Tuesday, 104 liberal Republicans in Kansas signed a letter of support for Paul Davis, the Democrat candidate facing incumbent GOP Governor Sam Brownback in November. In a statement, the retinue of Republicans cited ten points for their abandonment of the GOP.
The list of Republicans included names of the current GOP state Insurance Commissioner, Sandy Praeger, two former Lt. Governors, several former Senate Presidents and a Vice President, and a large number of former state legislators.
The ten-point letter of support posted on July 15 focused mostly on Brownback’s paring back of the massive statist agenda that former Democrat Governor Kathleen Sebelius implemented, mostly with the help of the very Republicans who signed the letter. Brownback rallied Kansas voters to support a large campaign of tax cuts angering the signers of the letter.
According to the letter the Republicans on the list signed onto Democrat claims that Brownback has sent Kansas into deep deficits, a claim that president of the Kansas Policy Institute, Dave Trabert, says is misleading at best, and utter lies at worst.
The mostly long-retired or recently fired moderate, establishment Republicans posted the letter as part of a larger war against conservatism in the Sunflower State. In fact, upon the announcement of the letter, the moderate candidate that tried to primary Governor Sam Brownback out of office claimed that the 104 Republicans proved the “immense unpopularity of Brownback’s policies among Kansas voters.”
Indeed, while the media has breathlessly reported this large number of Republicans joining liberal Democrat Davis in his quest for Governor, one thing the media doesn’t much discuss is the fact that the largest number of these Republicans have long been out of office, some primaried out of their positions by more conservative candidates.
Most of the Republicans on this list have a long history of supporting liberal policies. In fact, most worked hand-in-hand with former Governor Kathleen Sebelius to implement her liberal policies before she became Obama’s failed Secretary of Health and Human Services.
Just to name a few on the list who are disgruntled over conservatives, Steve Morris was the President of the Kansas Senate until he lost his primary to a more conservative candidate in 2012. One-time Senate Vice President John Vrati is also a signatory. Vratil retired instead of running for another term in a climate in which conservatives were ascendant. Vratil handpicked a candidate to take his place, but she was beaten in the primary by a more conservative candidate. As to Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, she was best friends with Sebelius and fully supported her left-wing ideas.
What is clear here is that the 104 Republicans who signed onto the Paul Davis/Obama agenda did so in a spiteful strike against the voters of Kansas who threw many of them out of office.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.