We need to check on the Reno County Republican Party leadership.
Late last month, party leaders selected Mark Steffen to fill the seat of the late Bob Bush until fellow Republican, Daniel Friesen, who ran unopposed in general election ballot, assumes the seat in January.
The Hutchinson News’ John Green reported 12 of 13 people who represent precinct committees in the commission district voted for Steffen, with one vote going to Friesen — as a write-in.
Green reported the selection was a secret ballot, but the 13 qualified to vote were: Wayne Jackson, Vicki Jackson, Ryan Patton, Deanna Steffen, Rick Barkman, Irene Barkman, Mike Sullivan, Gary Whitt, Linda Whitt, Paul Waggoner, Todd Trussell, Mary Kauffman and Susan Buttram.
Steffen’s selection was sent to the governor’s office for the official appointment.
This is a bad look. Not just for Reno County but for the state. If people can’t get along locally at the county courthouse, how can we expect them to get along in Topeka at the Kansas Statehouse?
We have a few questions for them.
Why didn’t you just place the rightly elected Daniel Friesen in early? It would have helped get him up to speed when he takes over in January. It could have helped with a smoother transition.
Do you know what kind of precedent this sets for other Kansas counties? We promise it’s not a good one. Imagine if this went on in more populous Shawnee, Riley, Wyandotte, Johnson or Douglas counties. People would be furious and rightfully so.
We wonder what the late Bob Bush would have to say about all of this? Would he approve of your actions?
Why seat a man to the post for a little over a month and a half? What is there to gain from Mark Steffen in serving such a brief term? What amazing thing did he have to offer? The News reported no one offered comment but instead called for the vote on closing nominations.
In our view, these Republicans did bad by their party and frankly by Friesen.
In short, we know you can do better and we hope you will given the chance.