Friday, April 10, 2020

Welcome to the KDP Weekly Rundown – the Kansas Democratic Party’s update of the biggest things going on in the state party and the state government. What are we focused on this week? A 2020 Primary update, the Kansas Legislature must pass Medicaid expansion to address COVID-19, GOP Leadership risks lives by rejecting Gov. Kelly’s Executive Order, Trump’s inadequate and chaotic response to COVID-19, this week’s COVID-19 update, and our BKC progress and upcoming virtual training opportunities!

The KDP Team has released a 2020 Primary Toolkit for Democrats across Kansas! Please feel free to utilize the included resources to inform others about important dates and deadlines concerning the upcoming primary election. We will update the drive as we produce more graphics and informational content.

2020 PRIMARY UPDATE

On March 30th and April 7th, we mailed 2020 Primary ballots to all registered Kansas Democrats! For a complete timeline of the vote-by-mail schedule, check out this one-pager. Make sure you check in with your networks to make sure they fill out their ballots and meet the “received by” deadline of May 2, 2020.

The KDP Chair Vicki Hiatt released the following statement on April 8 regarding the 2020 Primary and Bernie Sanders’s decision to drop out of the Presidential Contest:

“We recognize that many Kansas voters will be disappointed by today’s news that Bernie Sander’s has chosen to suspend his campaign. However, we cannot overstate the importance of voting by mail in the Kansas 2020 Primary. If we want to make sure voters have the option to vote-by-mail in future elections, especially for the November general election if the COVID-19 virus has not been contained, Kansans must prove that vote-by-mail keeps our communities safe and makes our democracy stronger. The KDP needs our members to step up to the plate now more than ever. Please make sure you vote, and then call your neighbors, family members and other loved ones to make sure they make their voices heard. Together, we will prove vote-by-mail must be prioritized at the local, state, and national level throughout the 2020 cycle to keep our communities safe and our democracy vibrant.”

KS LEG MUST PASS MEDICAID EXPANSION TO ADDRESS COVID-19

(KSN) – Governor Laura Kelly said Monday that Medicaid expansion would be a great help to the state of Kansas during the coronavirus pandemic.

Kansas lawmakers have been squabbling over Medicaid expansion for years. Republican opposition has cost the state valuable resources. Governor Kelly says that if Medicaid expansion had been in place years ago, the state would have been bringing in up to $1 billion dollars each year. She says this would not only put the state in a much better financial position but also help local hospitals.

“They would have had better bottom lines and better cushions to ride this through and then better ongoing revenue,” said Governor Kelly.

Republican Senate Majority Leader, Jim Denning, agrees with the governor. In a statement to KSNT, he said, “All Kansas hospitals, just like our businesses, will take a big financial hit from the effects of the C-19 emergency.”

GOP LEADERSHIP RISKS LIVES BY REJECTING GOV. KELLY’S EXECUTIVE ORDER 

What’s happening?

(Wichita Eagle) – Easter looming, Kansas Republican leaders on Wednesday revoked Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly’s order limiting religious gatherings to 10 people as the state’s coronavirus death toll jumped 40 percent.

House and Senate leaders — meeting as a body called the Legislative Coordinating Council — voted along party lines to throw out the directive. Their decision came as the number of reported COVID-19 cases in the state climbed to more than 1,000 and the death count ticked up to 38.

(Kansas City Star, Editorial Advisory Board) – The Legislative Coordinating Committee endangered Kansans Wednesday. It prolonged the public health risk in our state. Its members should be ashamed, and its actions should be remembered.

TRUMP’S INADEQUATE AND CHAOTIC REPONSE TO COVID-19

What’s happening?

Trump’s failed leadership and mismanagement of the coronavirus outbreak has endangered Americans and significantly worsened a severe public health crisis.

Trump is trying to rewrite history by claiming he only learned about the severity of the coronavirus in late January, even though the White House was warned by the intelligence community as early as November, there were meetings throughout December, and Trump was briefed in early January. And yet, Trump publicly downplayed the threat and wasted crucial months that could have been spent ramping up testing and purchasing lifesaving medical supplies.

COVID-19 PRECAUTIONS

What’s happening?

Governor Laura Kelly: Our state is well prepared. With this emergency declaration we can activate our response and coordinate fully. This is part of the process and will make access to important resources more accessible. We continue to work closely with our local, state and federal partners.

If you have symptoms such as fever, cough or shortness of breath and believe you may have had contact or have had contact with someone with a laboratory confirmed case of COVID-19, stay home and call your healthcare provider.

You may also call the KDHE phone bank at 1-866-534-3463 (1-866-KDHEINF) today Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. For more information about COVID-19, visit KDHE’s website and Frequently Asked Questions at kdheks.gov/coronavirus/ and cdc.gov/coronavirus.

BKC CAMPAIGN UPDATE

The KDP is now 62% closer to achieving our ambitious goal to add 100 BKC members to our team! Every new BKC member helps us to deliver our message in new and accessible ways: virtual organizing, at-home text banks, webinars focused on writing letters to the editor. Be sure to share this link with your network to help us reach our goal and build the best coordinated campaign Kansas has ever seen in 2020!

UPCOMING VIRTUAL TRAINING OPPORTUNITIES:

ActBlue is offering a new webinar on building your online community during COVID-19! If you’re interested in learning how to grow and cultivate your email list when you can’t connect with people in person, join ActBlue’s digital fundraising experts to discuss how your campaign can adapt to the moment. Sign up here to join ActBlue’s webinar on April 14th at 10:30 CST.

Onward,
KDP Team