Kevin Yoder—this young KU law school grad and current attorney is now serving his 3rd term in the house representing an Overland Park-based district that includes the headquarters of Sprint. Yoder is known as a pragmatic voice in the legislature who transcends the moderate/conservative political divide in the Kansas GOP and is well respected by moderates and conservatives alike. Yoder won his race this year with more than 60 percent of the vote and is constantly mentioned as a favorite for Johnson County DA in the future, state senate, and even congress. Yoder was recently named chair of the power Appropriations committee.
Julia Lynn—another young, energetic, and bright newcomer, Lynn faced a strong opponent in Olathe Superintendent Ron Wimmer in her first election bid after being appointed to Kay O’Connor’s seat by the GOP precinct committee members in 2007, but Lynn won by a resounding 10 percent. Lynn was recently named vice chair of the Tax and Commerce committees, a major accomplishment for a freshman legislator who will be making waves in Topeka and throughout her political career.
Kasha Kelly--this dynamic Arkansas City representative has championed budget reform, fiscal responsibility, and led the implemention of the state's first sunshine laws to promote state budget transparency online. Kelly has incredible skill and drive, which makes her a rising star in the party.
Lance Kinzer--this third-term Olathe lawyer carefully researches the issues and knows the Kansas constitution like the back of his hand. Kinzer has championed reductions in state spending and a strict constructivist view of the state constitution. He has also worked across the aisle and written critical legislation to downsize government and halt its growth. Look for Kinzer to run for AG someday.
Lynn Jenkins—popular state treasurer took on native son and former congressman Jim Ryun and overcame long odds, defying the pundits and winning. But she didn’t stop there—Jenkins promised new Republican leadership, running on a strong platform of the core issues of low taxes, cutting wasteful spending, eliminating earmarks, and sealing the borders. In one of only a few defeats of incumbent Democrats nationwide, Jenkins returned the 2nd District to Republican control. Jenkins will be a powerful force in Washington and strong voice from Kansas, serving as a prime example of the type of campaign Republicans need to run if they want to regain power.
Steve Howe—conservative, bridge-builder, 15-year veteran of the Johnson County DA’s office who united Republicans around his candidacy and defeated political opportunist and turncoat Rick Guinn in November, despite being heavily outspent. I personally know Steve well and worked in the DA’s office with him and he will be an honest, effective, and tireless advocate on behalf of the citizens of this county. It will be refreshing to move beyond the political posturing, corruption, and controversy-plagued administrations of Morrison and Kline. The question is: what is next in Howe’s political future?