Kansas House of Representatives appoints leadership for upcoming session

Published: Dec. 5, 2022 at 11:47 AM CST
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Members of the Kansas House of Representatives appointed leadership for the upcoming session in early December.

On Monday morning, Dec. 5, Kansas House Republicans elected Representative Dan Hawkins (R-Wichita) as Speaker of the House. Hawkins, the previous House Majority Leader, will take over the seat after Rep. Ron Ryckman (R-Olathe) steps down.

Three nominations for House Majority Leader were also made - Susan Humphries (R-Wichita), Chris Croft (R-Overland Park) and Sean Tarwater (R-Stillwell). Croft was ultimately elected to that position.

On the other side of the aisle, Democratic House Minority Leader Tom Sawyer (D-Wichita) stepped down from his position and Vic Miller (D-Topeka) was chosen to take his place. Miller defeated Brandon Woodard (D-Lenexa) with a final vote of 21-19.

“I’m running for minority leader because we can do better,” said Miller. “When democrats do better, the people of Kansas do better.”

“I’m not saying that we’re going to agree on everything, which we won’t,” said Hawkins, “fundamentally we’re quite a ways apart, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t sit down and talk and even when we disagree we can talk through the situations and part in a friendly manner.”

After the recent midterms Hawkins says to expect a more conservative legislature.

“I don’t think the house is going to come to the center, just look at the results of what the election was,” said Hawkins. “I would say that our body if anything it moved a little bit farther right so I think you’re going to see conservative proposals consistently come out.”

Hawkins also says don’t expect much to change in the House’s relationship with Governor Kelly.

“We’re going to work with Laura were we can,” said Hawkins. “We will certainly fight our positions where she doesn’t agree with us. I think there are some places where we can work very well and there’s going to be places where we vehemently disagree. We’ve had four years with Governor Kelly, we’ve got four more and I’m sure we will work really hard to override any veto’s that she brings our way.”