In an upbeat state-of the state address Tuesday evening, Gov. Sam Brownback said, “We have become the shining city on the hill and the champions for life.” The pro-life excerpts from the speech are here.
Gov. Brownback has asked for a change in the judicial selection method for the State Supreme Court which aligns with KFL’s top legislative priority this year.
KFL opposes the secretive deliberations that choose Kansas Supreme Court justices. Any change in selection method must be approved first by 2/3 of the House and Senate and then gain the assent of the public on the 2016 ballot.
Brownback supports dumping the current selection method in his speech:“The Legislature should put before Kansas voters a proposed Constitutional amendment for a more democratic selection process for our Supreme Court justices. Kansas is the only state in the country where the selection of Supreme Court justices is controlled by a handful of lawyers.[and]…removes the people of Kansas from the process of selecting judges.”
As an example of an unprincipled judiciary, a Kansas district court has issued a temporary injunction on the Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Abortion Act and declared a right to abortion exists in Kansas’ pre-Civil War constitution! Kansans now await a ruling from the State Court of Appeals –at any time– on that injunction.
PLANNED PARENTHOOD DEFUNDING
What the mainstream media took note of was the Governor’s announcement on Planned Parenthood. “Today, I am directing [KDHE] Secretary Susan Mosier to ensure that not a single dollar of taxpayer money goes to Planned Parenthood through our Medicaid program. I welcome legislation that would enshrine this directive in state law.”
In the Associated Press coverage, the lobbyist for Planned Parenthood of Kansas Mid-Missouri said that $61,000 was at stake and that they intend to fight for it. Medicaid provision for low-income health is jointly subsidized by federal and state monies.
Under Gov. Brownback, Kansas has already insured that $370,000.00 in annual Title X reproductive health money for low-income patients is prioritized to full-service public clinics and hospitals. Planned Parenthood–failing to meet those qualifications– challenged this annually renewed prioritization in court and lost at the federal appellate level.
Brownback received extended applause last night after this segment of the speech:“In 2011, I signed legislation stopping most taxpayer funding from going to Planned Parenthood. The time has come to finish the job. Planned Parenthood’s trafficking of baby body parts is antithetical to our belief in human dignity.“
The AP also quoted Kansas Attorney General, Derek Schmidt, as promising to defend withholding this funding from Planned Parenthood.