LETTER: Discover the truth

Terry Rogers/Lansing

To the editor:

I submit this letter to address the subject of the legislative records of Kansas state Rep. Pat Proctor and Kansas state Sen. Jeff Pittman. 

There is a very simple solution to answer the question of who is an effective legislator and who is not. Simply visit www.kslegislature.org.

During the legislative session which lasts for about 90 days per year, everyone can tune in to live broadcasts of proceedings in the House and the Senate to include committee meetings. If you miss it live, catch the videos at your convenience. You can stay informed directly from the source simply by clicking the link of your choice on the home page under “Audio/Video Broadcast.” There is no need for any voter to rely on hearsay regarding legislative activities.

Another source of information on this official website might prove to be very interesting and informative to previous letter writers. I encourage them and all Leavenworth Times readers to go to the homepage www.kslegislature.org then click on “House.” A dropdown menu will allow you to choose the state representative of your choice.

Let’s use Rep. Proctor as an example. Once you are on his legislative page you will see a list of all of the bills and resolutions that this freshman representative has sponsored and co-sponsored. In his first and only session, he sponsored/co-sponsored three bills: HB2020, HB2021 and HB2066. If you click on the description of these bills, you can read the bill history blow by blow and its current status.

In Rep. Proctor’s case, you will find that two of the three bills, HB2021 and HB2066, progressed and were ultimately approved by Gov. Kelly. Rep. Proctor also introduced four resolutions. Three of the four were adopted.

Now let’s look at another example of a legislative record, that of Sen. Pittman. You can access his legislative page by clicking “Senate” then finding his name in the dropdown menu. In his first and only session as a senator, Sen. Pittman sponsored/co-sponsored 13 bills. None passed out of committee which means they never made it to the Senate floor. Sen. Pittman contributed no successful legislation during this session. He sponsored four resolutions, three of which were adopted.

Another feature on this official Kansas Legislature website is that you can explore previous sessions. For instance, during the 2019-2020 legislative session, then Rep. Pittman sponsored/co-sponsored 21 bills in the House. Eighteen of his bills died in committee, one was “Stricken from Calendar by Rule 1507” and two died on the calendar. Last session, Rep. Pittman contributed no successful legislation.

Some politicians may not like the fact that now you can be an informed voter all on your own with just a little research. Too bad. We are living in disturbing times in a distressed country. It’s time for all Americans regardless of party affiliation to get active, get involved and to determine for themselves what elected officials are actually doing or not doing. The sad truth is that for many Kansans living in small towns without adequate media coverage of their legislators, those legislators have figured out that what happens in Topeka stays in Topeka. In other words, their constituents will only know what they tell them. Don’t be satisfied with that flawed system. Discover the truth for yourself.