The increasing flurry of campaign postcards and commercials is a true sign that it is election season once again in Kansas. This year all 125 seats in the Kansas House of Representatives and the 40 seats in the Kansas Senate are on the ballot.
The Kansas Chamber Political Action Committee, the state’s most influential business-focused organization, recently announced its 2020 primary endorsements.
Some candidates endorsed by the Chamber PAC are running for re-election or are challenging incumbents. Others are seeking public office for the first time. It is a list of well-qualified Kansans with unique backgrounds and professional experiences who will serve our state well. The candidates have one important goal in common: to make our state a top place to do business, raise a family and retire.
A robust economy is vital to Kansas and the state’s business community. It enables businesses to provide billions of dollars in important tax revenue, hundreds of thousands of jobs for Kansans, and millions of dollars in philanthropic support for our communities, schools and nonprofit organizations. Businesses make their decisions to invest and expand in a community or state based on many factors — key among them are competitive operations costs and fair legal and regulation environments.
The last two legislative sessions show elections matter. Lawmakers and Gov. Laura Kelly increased taxes by more than $1 billion. They worked to expand the size and reach of government. They stopped sensible legal and regulation reforms. They increased government spending which had the state’s budget bankrupt by 2021. These actions are not reflective of what most Kansans want from their state-elected leaders.
If we want Kansas to be a top state to do business, we need to elect legislative champions who understand the fundamental role that business plays in the economic health of Kansas.
That is why the Kansas Chamber PAC endorsed candidates who are steadfast in strengthening the Kansas economy and its business community. Rather than rubber stamping the re-election of incumbents who voted to weaken our state’s economy, the PAC carefully considered each candidate before deciding whom to endorse. Our research included, but was not limited to, reviewing candidate surveys and voting records as well as conducting in-person interviews.
There are often differing opinions in the realm of Kansas politics about the role of government. In the coming weeks, you may see or hear commercials or receive postcards sent by the Chamber PAC that present contrasting information to what you may believe about your state legislators. Please know the Chamber PAC campaign efforts are 100% fact-based and include sources that have been carefully researched.
The Kansas Chamber PAC urges Kansans to learn more about the candidates before they vote. The policymakers we send to Topeka will determine whether Kansas and its citizens and businesses thrive under a strong economy — or suffer under the burden of an ever-expanding government.
We hope voters join the Chamber PAC in electing lawmakers who will lead the charge so our state's economy will create more jobs and prosperity for all Kansans.
Alan Cobb is president and CEO of the Kansas Chamber of Commerce, a statewide association whose members are small, medium and large businesses from a wide variety of industries and professions.