Gov. Sam Brownback likely left Washington for Kansas to escape the circus only to find himself here in the center ring. Indeed, Brownback may be the only would-be appointee hoping to seek a reprieve from unwanted attention by joining the Trump administration.
The tom-toms (excuse the cultural appropriation) are now beating so loudly that it seems a given Brownback will be leaving in the near future. The position that would suit him well and for which he seems slotted is U.S. ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, a State Department position based in Washington, D.C.
“I hope it’s true. He’d be fantastic,” Nina Shea, a human rights lawyer who serves as director for the Hudson Institute’s Center for Religious Freedom, told the Kansas City Star. As a U.S. Senator Brownback had been deeply involved in bi-partisan advocacy efforts on behalf of persecuted religious minorities in the Sudan. “He kept the issue alive,” said Shea. “People very much respect him up on the hill. … He brings real stature to the position.”
For those who may arrived in Kansas City within the last half hour or so, Brownback has been subject to the most relentless propaganda assault any decent, local American political figure has had to endure in recent memory. The assault culminated in the Kansas legislature rolling back Brownback’s four year-old tax cutting program.
Without Brownback to harangue on a daily basis, the state media will need a new Kansas Republican to abuse. If Brownback leaves, Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer, a Johnson County physician, would assume the governorship. Under normal circumstances, the media would train their sights on Colyer, a conservative with excellent credentials and a likely candidate to run for governor on his own terms in 2018.
The media, however, have already placed their bullseye on the back of Colyer’s most formidable primary opponent, Secretary of State Kris Kobach. Kobach has already declared his candidacy, which prompted the Kansas City Star to link Kobach to the following words: “controversial,” “overblown,” “voter suppression,” “racial bias,” “extremist,” and “racial profiling.”
Bizarrely, Star editors continue to reassure readers of their non-partisanship. Even more bizarrely, their readers seem to believe them.