Report: Nearly 1 in 4 lawmakers are appointees

News

November 29, 2018 - 11:13 AM

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Nearly one-fourth of Kansas lawmakers began serving in the Legislature after they were appointed to fill vacancies, under a system used in just three states.

Under the system, party officials choose a replacement and the governor appoints that person, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Party officials help pick legislative replacements in about a dozen states in total. By contrast, 25 states use special elections to fill vacant legislative seats, The Wichita Eagle reports.

The typically little-noticed replacement process is drawing attention after three senators were elected to statewide office, including Democratic Sen. Laura Kelly as governor. And more vacancies are possible if other lawmakers resign to join Kelly’s administration.

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