The next election for Kansas governor is in November of 2018.
How many candidates for Governor will there be for each major party?
So far, seven Republicans and five Democrats have indicated interest in being a candidate.
Secretary of State Kris Kobach would likely have the most intense support of any candidate, especially from those who are concerned about uncontrolled immigration and think that voter fraud is widespread in Kansas. Also, he is probably the best known of any of the candidates, but he could also generate intense opposition because of his stance on policies such as immigration.
There is the question of what stance legislative and gubernatorial candidates will take on the legislature’s rolling back of Governor Brownback’s tax policies. I suggest that a candidate taking a strong stance against the tax policies passed by the legislature this year could generate winning support with the time-worn slogan that the state has a spending problem and not a revenue problem. We need to remember that no candidate for Governor as an incumbent or otherwise has ever been defeated for opposing increasing taxes. The late Governor Robert Docking had what he called a tax lid, and he spoke often about it, saying that the taxpayer is entitled to some protection. The Governor spoke to a class of mine at the end of his eight-year tenure in office. A student asked him if he would still be talking about money if he ran again.
Governor Docking responded by saying, “Young man, there has never been an election for governor of Kansas in my lifetime when money was NOT the issue.” I think that Governor Docking was right about that and that revenue and tax policies will be major issues for the 2018 election.