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Kansas State Senate District 37

The Kansas Senate is the upper house of the Kansas Legislature, the state legislature of the U.S. State of Kansas. It is composed of 40 senators representing an equal amount of districts, each with a population of at least 60,000 inhabitants. Members of the Senate are elected to a four-year term. There is no limit to the number of terms that a senator may serve.

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  • Molly Baumgardner
    (Rep)

  • Candidate picture

    Becca Peck
    (Dem)

Biographical Information

With all of the issues facing Kansas brought about by the COVID-19 virus, what would be your first priority?

Would you support overturning the SAFE Act that was put into place creating barriers to voting by Kansans? What changes to Kansas election laws and voting systems would you support? Please explain why you would support those changes.

What is your position on expanding Medicaid? Why? What would you propose to ensure health care availability in rural areas?

What is your position on gun control and the issue of gun violence? What, if any, changes would you propose to current laws?

How can changes be made to current House and Senate rules that allow for Chamber Leaders to control Committee leadership?

Will you support changing the House and Senate rules to allow a transparent system for determining which proposed bills are heard, debated and voted on? If not, why not?

Issues with DCF and foster care, plus antiquated computer systems in the Departments of Labor and Education have made news. Do you feel that our current agencies are funded at a level that they can carry out their missions? If yes, what is the problem? If no, how can it be addressed?

How can Legislators address the issues of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Kansas?

In the current politically-polarized environment, how can Senators and Representatives work together to govern Kansas?

New legislative districts are drawn by the Legislature during the second year following the Census (2012, 2022, etc.) Would you vote in favor of an amendment that would create an impartial committee to draw the new legislative districts in Kansas?

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Personal Biography After my youngest experienced severe global disabilities as an infant, I became his full-time healthcare and education advocate. For 20 years I filled critical leadership roles as a community volunteer at church, in boy scouts, schools, homeowners association, and with the Kansas Federation of Democratic Women. Married for 28 years and in the district 20, we have two adult sons. I will bring my wealth of life experiences to find common-sense bi-partisan solutions to real problems Kansans face.
Campaign Phone (913) 592-9209
Education Bachelors of Science, Computer Science from DeVry Institutute of Technology 1986
Community/Public Service Community Service: Founding President - Johnson County Democratic Women South; Treasurer - Kansas Federation of Democratic Women; Treasurer - food coop; Office Manager, sunday school teacher, and host family coordinator - church; Secretary - homeowners association; and Assistant Scoutmaster, Treasurer, registration coordinator - boy scouts
Address 14317 Melrose St Overland Park, KS 66221
Many essential workers don’t have insurance. Yet, they are on the front lines exposed daily to COVID. Essential workers come into contact with all of us; healthy and contagious. We all go to the grocery store, gas station, and pharmacy. Essential workers deliver packages and stock shelves. We are only as safe as our most vulnerable.

Many of our essential workers have two jobs to make ends meet increasing their exposure. Many of our essential workers with dual jobs work with vulnerable populations.

Additionally, many workers who lost jobs as a result of COVID also lost their insurance.

Vulnerable residents, essential workers, unemployed, and uninsured all have complicated health risk exposures in the middle of a pandemic.

We are projected to be in the middle of the second wave when the 2021 session begins, Medicaid Expansion should go to the Senate floor in January 2021.

When we protect our most vulnerable, we protect everyone.
Yes, I support overturning SAFE Act. Many Kansans don’t have birth certificates. Since birth certificates weren’t widely used until the 1930s and 1940s, tens of thousands of voters would be disenfranchised and unable to vote if birth certificates were required.

To make voting more accessible and easier, I support the following changes to Kansas voter laws:

1.) automatic voter registration at 18 years of age through the DMV since the DMV knows a person's citizenship status

2.) high schools social studies classes registering seniors to vote

3.) same-day registration for registration and voting

4.) county autonomy where the largest Kansas counties are allowed to select their own election commissioner.

5.) all counties consistently voting the same number of days in advance
Kansas leaves billions of dollars on the table by not expanding Medicaid. All Kansans pay federal taxes that are given to other states for their Affordable Care Act. Yet, Kansans don’t see any of those dollars returned home.

Kansas has at least 150,000 residents that would benefit from Medicaid Expansion. Since hundreds of thousands of Kansans lost insurance when they lost their jobs due to COVID-19, this number of uninsured Kansans spiked way up in the middle of a pandemic. Unconscionable.
We need laws that strike a balance between individual rights and the public good.
I support:

1.) Full House / Senate vote on all nominees for leadership

2.) Committee Chairpersons determined by committee member vote rather than the Senate President or the Speaker of the House.
I support:

1.) Eliminating the Senate President and Speaker pocket vetos.

2.) If the committee presents the bill to the floor, the bill should get a vote.

3.) Open bi-partisan collaboration in bill development.

4.) Bills should be written in open with ample time for all Senators and Representatives to review the document before debate and vote.
Funding is not sufficient for DCF, Foster Care, Department of Labor, and Education from a decade of underfunding from the failed Brownback experiment.

Kansas needs a fourth tax bracket.

Kansas needs new revenue streams, taxing medicinal cannabis would be a great start closing the gap.
Reallocate some 911 first responder funds to skilled mental health first responders. When a mental health call goes into 911, it is preferable 4 mental health workers show up with 1 or 2 police officers; rather than 1 mental health officer and 4 or 5 police officers.

In one specific county following an incident requiring police response, a CIT, Community Intervention Team police officer, schedules a follow-up meeting with the resident to build a positive relationship.

The community and police officers need much more training on de-escalation strategies to manage mental health situations.
Legislators need to spend more office time with each other getting to know each other as people. Eat lunch or dinner together and visit about the kids and vacation. Find common ground.

There has been too much vilification of the opposite viewpoint sending everyone to their corners where they won't talk to each other. We have to find common ground. Where do we agree?

More collaboration and talking to each other. Here is the banana. How do we peel it? I want to peel it from the stem, my opponent wants to use a knife. We both want to get to the fruit. How can we compromise to solve the problem rather than insisting the other side is wrong.

We need to listen to each side, really listen, bounce ideas off the other side to find compromises creating a Kansas that works for everyone.
Yes, I support an impartial Kansas committee that does not politically benefit from how the legislative district boundaries are drawn.