Editorial Commentary: Ken Ciboski

Political commentator Ken Ciboski stands just right of center and offers a common-sense view of politics today.

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Stephen Koranda / KPR/File photo

Emotions ran high, the political atmosphere was tense, and Governor Brownback reportedly “choked up” in a meeting with legislative leaders before the Kansas legislature ended its 2015 session at 4:00 a.m. on a Friday, when the House passed the largest tax increase in Kansas history.

mlinksva / Public Domain / Creative Commons

The 2015 Kansas state legislative session is winding down.

Critics complain that the legislature was in session too long to accomplish what it did. At the same time, we need to remember that the state legislature is the most important link between Kansans and their state government. It is also the most representative institution of the state.

nostri-imago / Flickr / Creative Commons

In my years of teaching political science, only a few students have expressed a desire to be a professional politician or to run for political office. Recently, I asked a class at Wichita State if they were encouraged while growing up to think about politics as a career. Only one person raised a hand.

Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

The question of what to do to fix a $400 million budget deficit projected for the state of Kansas next fiscal year is fraught with political peril for officeholders, especially if taxes are increased, which is likely.

Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

After five years of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, and the failure after more than 50 votes in Congress to get the needed support to repeal the signature legislative achievement of Barack Obama’s presidency, Republicans in Congress are dropping the effort for repeal and are turning to issues such as trade and tax reform.

In Praise Of Politics

Apr 8, 2015
Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Too often, Americans view politicians and politics with disdain. People say that politics is a dirty business and that politicians are corrupt and crooked.

wikipedia.org

At a town-hall style meeting in Cleveland this past week, President Obama sparked a discussion in which he said that requiring Americans to vote would have a “potentially transformative” effect on the political map of the country.

Carla Eckels / KMUW/File photo

People decry low voter turnout in local elections. In the March 3 primary election for Wichita Mayor and City Council candidates, approximately 20,000 individuals-- only 10 percent-- of nearly 200,000 registered voters cast a vote. Wichita now has a population of approximately 382,000, with 286,000 people over 18 years of age who could qualify as a voter. That means about 86,000 people in Wichita who could be voting are not on the voter registration rolls at all.

vansassa / flickr

In my nearly 47 years in Wichita, I have observed that city leaders have focused on that “one more thing” they think would attract and keep people in Wichita, especially young people.

kereifsnyder / Flickr / Creative Commons

    

How well are Americans doing with civic literacy?

The results of the 2010 National Assessment of Education Progress, known as the “Nation’s Report Card,” demonstrate that most K-12 students are learning little about civics and history. Only 22 percent of fourth-grade students, 18 percent of eighth-graders, and 13 percent of high school seniors demonstrated proficiency in American history.

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