KDP Weekly Rundown #8

Friday, May 10, 2019

Welcome to the KDP Weekly Rundown – the Kansas Democratic Party’s update of the biggest things going on in the Kansas Legislature and the state party. What are we focused on this week? Medicaid expansion, the state budget, and more!


  • What’s happening?

Medicaid expansion and the budget bill were closely intertwined in the state house for the last few days of the session. The state house repeatedly voted against passing a budget in an attempt to force Senate leadership to reconsider their blockage of debate on the Medicaid expansion bill. Republican leadership responded by proposing punitive budget bills. The coalition of moderate Republicans and Democrats fell apart late Saturday night as the moderates grew concerned about possible retaliation from GOP leadership.


  • What’s happening?

After the Medicaid expansion coalition fell apart, the state house passed SB 25 with a vote of 79-45. The state senate then approved it 26-14. The passed budget includes Gov. Laura Kelly’s last minute amendment to boost corrections spending by $25 million but moved command of the corrections budget to the state’s Financial Council. The budget also eliminates a provision creating a child welfare oversight committee.


  • What’s happening?

The Kansas Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the state’s new K-12 education funding law. The law increases education funding by about $90 million a year. The state argued that the bipartisan funding plan meets the constitutional standard required by the 2018 ruling in Gannon v. Kansas while the plaintiffs argued the plan falls about $270 million short of complying with the constitutional requirement. A ruling is expected by June 30.


  • What’s happening?

The legislature will return on May 29 for Sine Die, the last day of the session. This is the last day that the legislature can take action.