Mary Pilcher-Cook

The Kansas Senate has rejected a proposal for encouraging the state to provide long-acting birth control to poor residents after a Republican member likened it to the discredited 20th Century eugenics movement that sought to control who could have children.

Democratic Sen. Marci Francisco of Lawrence offered the proposal Thursday as an amendment to a bill that would permanently block the state from sending federal family planning dollars for non-abortion services to Planned Parenthood. Her amendment failed on a voice vote.

KHI News Service

More than half of the Republicans in the Kansas Senate have signed a letter asking President Susan Wagle to reinstate the former chairwoman of the chamber's health committee.

Senators signing the letter circulated on Tuesday included Majority Leader Terry Bruce of Nickerson. The Associated Press obtained a copy signed by 17 of the 32 GOP senators.

Kansas Senate Health Committee Chairwoman Pilcher-Cook Ousted

Feb 15, 2016
KHI News Service

From KHI News Service:

A spat over Medicaid expansion and Senate rules caused the leader of the Kansas Senate to replace the chairwoman of the Senate Public Health Committee on Friday.

Senate President Susan Wagle, a Republican from Wichita, said in a statement released Saturday morning that Sen. Mary Pilcher-Cook “showed a complete disrespect for the body and its rules” earlier in the week.

State Senator Mary Pilcher-Cook is pushing a measure that would make it illegal to pay women to be surrogate mothers.

The proposal would also void existing surrogacy contracts.

The Public Health and Welfare Committee met yesterday to begin two days of hearings on the her proposal.

The bill is patterned after a law in the District of Columbia. Pilcher-Cook is concerned that Kansas has no laws dealing with surrogacy contracts; she worries that women are being exploited.