Then in the early 70’s, former Republican Governor Ed Arn led a commission to study, in depth, the court system in Kansas. That study produced the Unified Court System that brought many changes, including the creation of the Kansas Court of Appeals. I served on that commission after being appointed by then House Minority Leader, Pete Loux. Change is difficult and this set of changes did not come easy. In 1977, in a bipartisan vote, the legislature adopted the package, and it was signed into law by Republican Governor Robert Bennett.
Before us now are changes under review that would take us back to a system very much like what we threw out in the 1950’s. With our current politics of one party rule, you have the possibility of voting on these constitutional changes in August of 2016. With no statewide primary elections in 2016, what would dictate the turnout? It certainly would not be local Democratic Party primary races. But you would have the traditional Republican primary turnout, which currently favors the far right--the ones pushing this change. Looks a little like the triple play of the 50’s, doesn’t it? And we know how that turned out.