Friday, May 15, 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? 2020 Delegate Selection Process, Governor Kelly announces the beginning of phase 1.5 to safely reopen Kansas, GOP leadership in the KS Legislature tries to score cheap political points while putting Kansans at risk, Kansas campaign updates, the KS legislature must pass Medicaid Expansion to address COVID-19 fallout, and Trump’s inadequate response to COVID-19.

Interested in helping the Party get out our messaging to encourage Kansans to vote blue? Sign up for our new Letter to the Editor program here!

2020 DELEGATE SELECTION PROCESS

Interested in becoming a Kansas Delegate? The deadline to submit a declaration of candidacy to become a District Level Delegate is TODAY, MAY 15 at 5:00 PM! Be sure to share this information with your networks. Find more information on our website at: www.kansasdems.org/BeADelegate!

GOV. KELLY ANNOUNCES THE BEGINNING OF “PHASE 1.5” TO SAFELY REOPEN KANSAS

What’s happening?

(Kansas City Star) – Kansas will move into ‘Phase 1.5’ of it’s re-opening plan on Monday, allowing businesses such as barbershops and hair salons to open by appointment. Fitness centers and health clubs may also choose to reopen although all in-person classes and locker room visits will be prohibitted.

Laura Kelly: The good news is that hospitalizations and COVID-related deaths continue to decline, enabling us to move forward with our efforts to safely reopen Kansas. Unfortunately, the daily rate of disease spread has not shown the downward trajectory necessary to move fully into Phase 2. I said from the beginning that public safety must remain a top priority, which means that our reopening efforts must be driven by data, not dates. Phase 1.5 will continue our transition, but with necessary caution. 

GOP LEADERSHIP IN KS LEGISLATURE TRIES TO SCORE CHEAP POLITICAL POINTS WHILE PUTTING KANSANS AT RISK

What’s happening?

(KAKE) – GOP leaders in the Kansas Legislature moved aggressively on Wednesday to take control of how the state reopens it’s economy from Gov. Laura Kelly, the latest of several power grabs by GOP-controlled legislatures across the nation.

Susan Wagle: We won’t allow one dictator to determine everything. We will have a check and a balance of powers.

(Leavenworth Times) – Kelly could veto the [GOP] bill, but Kansas would be left with no form of disaster declaration beyond May 26. A long list of executive orders would be voided, including popular bans on housing evictions and an order expanding use of telemedicine. It isn’t clear whether Kansas would continue to receive the full scope of federal financial assistance tied to the virus.

KANSAS CAMPAIGN UPDATES: U.S. SENATE, U.S. HOUSE

U.S. Senate Race – What’s happening?

(Kansas City Star) – Manhattan, Kansas mayor, Usha Reddi, suspended her campaign for the US Senate on Thursday, saying she needs to focus on her local duties during the COVID-19 pandemic.

(Washington Post) – President Donald Trump recently reached out to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to encourage him to reconsider running for the U.S. Senate seat in Kansas. Trump’s request underscores the growing nervousness among Republicans that they could lose control of the Senate in this fall’s election and that a once-safe Kansas seat could now be in play.

(Associated Press) – Roger Marshall is struggling to consolidate GOP support in a primary against former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach. Strong doubts about Marshall have some Republicans watching the rise of another candidate in the race and worrying anew whether they’ll be able to nominate a Republican who can pull off what was once expected to be an easy November win.

U.S. House Races – What’s happening?

(CNN) – Former United States presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg endorsed Rep. Sharice Davids (KS-03) and Topeka Mayor Michelle De La Isla (KS-02) on Wednesday, highighting the importance of established candidates in key battle ground races…Representative Sharice Davids also received an endorsement from another former presidential candidate, Elizabeth Warren, last month.

KS LEGISLATURE MUST PASS MEDICAID EXPANSION TO ADDRESS COVID-19

(Morning Sun) – Through Medicaid expansion, with 90% of costs paid by the federal government, Kansas can bring hundreds of millions of tax dollars back to help ensure Kansas families, especially the newly uninsured and frontline workers in the coverage gap, are able to access comprehensive coverage.

Expanding and improving Medicaid will result in more kids and families having vital health coverage: increased access to screenings and preventive care, reduced prenatal costs, reduced infant mortality rates and improved health outcomes.

TRUMP’S INADEQUATE AND CHAOTIC REPONSE TO COVID-19

What’s happening?

Trump ignored warnings, downplayed the severity of this crisis, and failed to prepare for months, allowing the coronavirus to spread rapidly and undetected. Now we’re paying the price.

Trump continues to contradict his own public health experts, who set the record straight in testimony to Congress this week. Dr. Bright testified that Trump ignored early warnings and still has no plan to contain the virus, and Dr. Fauci contradicted Trump on the severity of the crisis and the need to ramp up testing. At the same time, Trump is pushing the CDC to lower its death count to make his response look better, and his White House buried CDC’s initial report with more comprehensive guidance to help local authorities reopen.

Furthermore, Trump on Thursday said testing for coronavirus might be ‘overrated.’ This comment comes after months of neglect from the Trump administration which resulted in countless unnecessary deaths. From prematurely declaring victory over the coronavirus, encouraging states to re-open despite warnings from top health officials that unnecessary deaths would follow and telling Americans to drink disinfectant, Trump’s COVID-19 failures are devastating for real Americans.

Onward,
KDP Team

P.S. Did a friend forward this to you? Click here to subscribe!