2018 Starts Now

This is a momentous year for Kansas politics. We will see the results of the most recent local elections play out in school boards and commissions across the state. We will endure a state legislative session fraught with political maneuvers calculated to impact the Governor's race in November. We will see jockeying at the statewide level for Congressional positions in the balance. And through it all, the average Kansan will be ignored, belittled, or pandered to.

But politics isn't all about politicians being political. Sometimes it's about dedicated individuals actually seeking to serve the public good. At MainStream, we seek to inform you about what is really going on, about the reasons behind votes, about the real effects of decisions being made in city halls, boardrooms, and Topeka.

The 2018 Kansas Legislative Session kicks off today in Topeka. The erstwhile Governor gives his "State of the State" speech tomorrow. June 1 is the deadline for candidates to register to run this year. Primaries are August 7. The General Election is November 6. And we will cover it all. (See the official list of Offices to be Elected or Retained)

The Legislative Session

There's one overwhelming topic for the Kansas Legislature this year. How does Kansas fund public education at a Constitutional level? Already we have seen some posturing from extremists leaders about changing the Constitution to make underfunding education legal. In an election year, the likelihood of that seems slim. But for similar reasons, raising taxes to ensure Kansas children have the opportunities they deserve seems unlikely. It is a dilemma that underscores one of the ideas we strive to communicate: governing is not simple, and simple ideas do not solve problems. Communication, understanding, compromise, this is what moves government forward and ensures it serves all constituents.

State Administration

This year will see a new administration in Topeka. We will elect a new Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Secretary of State, Attorney General, State Treasurer, and Commissioner of Insurance. We've seen the damage these positions can do, especially with Governor Brownback's tax policy folly, and Secretary of State Kobach's expensive and failed hunt for voter fraud. Kansas is in a fragile recovery now, and returning to the policies of these politicians would doom her to even darker times.

State Representation

Every one of the seats in the Kansas House of Representatives, all 125 of them, are up for election this year, as they are every two years. In 2016, we made incredible strides towards righting the ship and truly representing Kansans in the Statehouse. Issues that Kansans overwhelmingly care about, like gun safety, health care for working families, public education and transparency received vocal support and public dialog in 2017. In a tremendous victory for all of us, the tax policies that benefitted the few were rolled back, and more sustainable policies put in place.

But all of that is at risk in this election. The extremists have re-trenched, and already have spent millions on simplistic messages about "tax and spenders" and "freedom." If 2016 was critical, 2018 is even moreso, and will take all of us doing more than just voting to keep Kansas moving forward.

We need you

In that vein, we cannot do this without you. The organizations, the activists, the parents and the voters, they cannot get it done without all of us pulling together. Without all of us doing a little more. Because we can't get away with saying we're just "not political." We're all affected. We're all responsible.

So as the year gets started, won't you join us? Come to our events to learn. Meet your candidates to get informed. Volunteer with us or a candidate or another group to get involved. Give money, or time, to us or to others to make a difference.

Because it starts here.

Do more than vote.

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