Ciboski: A Kinder And Gentler Government

Apr 19, 2017

Credit J. Schafer / KPR/File photo

The 2017 Kansas state legislature has performed poorly. The legislature seems more supportive of the Governor than it is of the people. It failed to override the Governor’s veto of a fair and balanced tax and revenue measure passed by the legislature, and many issues remain unresolved.

As I have suggested, the legislature would likely be more effective with about 60 members instead of 165 in a unicameral body. This would cost thousands of dollars less every day the legislature is in session. I have suggested, too, that we have a prime minister selected by the legislative body and abolish the position of governor.

Also, if we are to have an effective and more representative legislature, I think we should adopt a system of PR or proportional representation for the entire state. No more legislative districts, no gerrymandering, and money would not play the role it now does in elections. Parties would field slates of candidates for election with legislative seats assigned based on the percentage of votes a party receives in an election. If it gets 30 percent of the vote, then it receives about 30 percent of the total legislative seats. With a PR system, more women and minorities would also be elected, and we would likely have a kinder and gentler government than we now have with our present winner-take-all electoral system.