Great Bend resident Frank McKinney on Monday declared himself a write-in candidate for the 112th District Kansas House of Representatives. Republican John Edmonds and Democrat Steve Muehleisen, both from Great Bend, are on the ballot. McKinney said he is a moderate Republican who represents a choice, especially within his own party.
“I’m an ‘Eisenhower moderate Republican,’” McKinney said, adding he wants voters to know, “there is another choice out there.” He took aim at Edmonds in particular, noting that candidate served in the House for 12 years, even though he initially said he was in favor of term limits. Edmonds is a Certified Public Accountant and retired from the House in 2007. He is currently a Barton County Commissioner, but did not seek reelection after announcing his bid to return to the Legislature.
McKinney farms Barton County acreage that has been in his family since the early 1870s. In the past he has served on the Smoky Hills Public Television board, the Great Bend-Barton County Planning Commission and is former president of the Barton County Historical Society. He was elected to two terms on the Barton Community College Board of Trustees.
“I believe in term limits,” McKinney said, saying the most time anyone should serve as a state senator is two four-year terms, and no one should serve in the House more than three terms.
“I’m concerned that the Republican party has gone from, ‘let’s compromise and discuss’ to ‘one idea only with no room for compromise,’ and that’s not what the party was founded on,” McKinney said.
Asked to respond, Edmonds agreed that term limits was “one of a number of issues” when he first ran for the House. “I served a number of years and was out of state office for six years. If returning, I guess I’ll return as an experienced freshman,” he said.
“I think I would describe myself as a ‘Reagan Republican,’” Edmonds added. “We are interested in less taxes, less spending, personal freedom and personal responsibility.”