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Kansas State House District 41

The Kansas House of Representatives is the lower house of the legislature of the U.S. state of Kansas. Composed of 125 state representatives from districts with roughly equal populations of at least 19,000, its members are responsible for crafting and voting on legislation, helping to create a state budget, and legislative oversight over state agencies.

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  • Mike Griswold

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    Pat Proctor

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?

Personal Biography Mike has been a Leavenworth and House District 41 resident since 2002, one year before he retired as an Army Colonel following 30 years of active military service. Mike is married to Deborah E. Griswold, Ph.D., University of Kansas, Assistant Professor of Practice, Special Education. They have three children and six grandchildren. Two of their three children are graduates of Leavenworth High School, as is their oldest granddaughter.
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Education Mike holds a bachelor of science (BS) degree from the United States Military Academy, West Point, NY; a master of science (MS) degree in management from the Naval Postgraduate School; and a master of military art and science (MMAS) degree from the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College (CGSC). In 2000 he earned a master of business administration (MBA) degree from the Rockhurst University Executive Fellowship Program. He Is a graduate of the U.S. Army CGSC, School of Advanced Military Studies, and Army War College Fellowship Program.
Community/Public Service Mike Griswold is a military veteran, business and civic leader. Mike ran for Leavenworth City Commission in 2017 and was elected to a four-year term. He began serving as a City Commissioner in January 2018 and in early December 2019 was elected by his fellow commissioners to serve a one-year term as Leavenworth Mayor. Working with his fellow commissioners Mike has been at the forefront of policies, programs, and projects that are improving the quality of life for all Leavenworth citizens. Improvements are evident in a number of areas including infrastructure, especially roads and the stormwater system, appearance and image of the City, public safety, economic development, and strategic communications. Since March 2020 he has led the City’s response to the COVID-19 health crisis, and ensuing economic hardships.
As I have been emphasizing since March in my role as Leavenworth Mayor my first priority would be to do my very best to ensure the health, safety, and welfare of Leavenworth citizens, and more broadly all Kansas citizens. If elected, I would immediately examine the current Kansas Public Health System to determine if changes need to be made to strengthen, streamline, and standardize its individual components. Things I am concerned about include protocols for testing, contact tracing, quarantine, data reporting, and strategic communications.

Regarding the impact of COVID-19 on jobs in the state and in my district I will focus on legislation and constituent services to help small businesses stay in business during this pandemic. I would examine current workforce development programs across the state and here in Leavenworth to ensure they are focusing on the training needed for the jobs that exist now and those that will be created in the not too distant future.
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It is more important than ever that all Kansans have access to quality, affordable healthcare. The next step toward achieving this in Kansas is expanding Medicaid, which is long overdue. Expansion would ensure that another 150,000 Kansans have access to critical healthcare services and would help save rural hospitals by increasing patient load and creating new health care jobs.

The 90%-10% split between federal and state funds, respectively, to pay for Medicaid expansion is a bargain. The state legislature has already forfeited an estimated $4 billion in federal funds that could have been used to improve the health of our citizens and save lives. In the last ten years, over 30 other states, including all of our neighboring states, have recognized the cost-benefit of expanding Medicaid for their citizens, and it is time for Kansas to do the same.
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I will do everything humanly possible to convince my fellow legislators that bills should by and large be “clean,” and focus on the issue at hand, rather than having unrelated and many times partisan provisions. This happens too often, particularly in the process of offering amendments, a process that, while important, is often abused by legislators on both sides of the aisle. There may be an opportunity at the beginning of the next legislative session, even as a brand new legislator, to “weigh in” on this process.

While I am running as a Democrat I want all citizens in the 41st District to know that, if elected, I will represent each one of them regardless of their political party and/or political persuasion. As my three years on the Leavenworth City Commission can attest to, I approach solving problems in a non-partisan, rational way, with the emphasis on rational.
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Personal Biography I’m a veteran with two tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan. I retired from the Army earlier this year after 25 years. I'm also a business owner. My wife and I own Baan Thai Restaurant and we are heavily invested in revitalizing downtown Leavenworth.   Finally, I'm an educator. I teach a couple days a week as a professor at Wichita State.
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Education Doctorate in History from Kansas State University. Masters in Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College. Masters in Theater Operations from the School of Advanced Military Studies at Fort Leavenworth. Masters in Strategy from the Command and General Staff College (CGSC) at Fort Leavenworth. Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University.
Community/Public Service I recently retired from the Army, but I am continuing to serve. I’m teaching our kids as a college professor. I also give back through my church, civic organizations like Rotary and Lions, veterans' organizations like the VFW, American Legion, and 40&8, and investments to revitalize our downtown. I hope to continue to serve you as your representative in the Kansas State House.
Address 624 Kickapoo St. Leavenworth, KS 66048
People deserve opportunity and hope for the future.   The programs designed to help low-income folks in my neighborhood have trapped them in poverty. Food stamps, welfare, and the proposed Medicaid expansion all have salary caps at or near the poverty line. We're punishing people for trying to improve their lives.   We need to make it easier for small businesses to hire people, too.   Sky-rocketing property taxes are robbing small businesses of money they would otherwise use to create jobs in our town. Through property tax valuation increases far above the rate of inflation and back door pseudo-taxes like storm water fees, Leavenworth, like many other places in Kansas, has completely sidestepped the tax lid. We have got to restore accountability to our property tax system.   Government should be in the business of creating opportunity and hope.
Our elections must be free and fair.

We must balance maximum access for Kansans to vote against the necessity for measures to prevent subverting our election system. In an age of cyber-crime and identity theft, we must ensure that every ballot cast reflects the will of a legitimate voter. If there are better measures than the SAFE Act, I am open to considering them.
It is morally wrong to keep people trapped in poverty.

My first priority is helping my neighbors chart a path out of government dependency and toward growing a future for themselves and their families. Expanding Medicaid--which is salary capped like other relief programs, near the poverty line--just creates another chain keeping our neighbors trapped in generational poverty.

Eighty percent of the money from expanded Medicaid would go to the big hospitals in Johnson County. If we are trying to save rural hospitals, lets look at how we can subsidize them or increase their efficiency.
I spent 25 years as a Soldier defending our rights, including America's first freedom, the right to keep and bear arms. If I have the honor of representing the people of Leavenworth and Fort Leavenworth, I will continue to defend those rights in Topeka.
I do not believe that any changes are needed to the current system.
Kansans have a right to know what their government is doing to make their lives better.

I fully support maximum transparency in our government. Every vote of every Representative and Senator, on the floor of the House and Senate or in committee, should be recorded and visible to the people of Kansas. Kansans should always be able to see which Representatives or Senators propose each bill brought before the Legislature. The deceptive practice of gut-and-go--which, two sessions ago, was used to try to slip Medicaid expansion through the Legislature--should be abolished.
Throwing money at problems is almost never the solution.

Kansas ranks as one of the top 10 states in the Union in full-time state and local government employees as a percentage of the population. If we can reduce this number and bring more efficiency to our state and local governments, these offices would have more operating capital for improvements in technology and infrastructure.
Equal protection under the law is a fundamental principle that must be upheld for all Kansans, regardless of color, ethnicity, gender, or religion. It is the principle that should guide every bill our Legislature considers.
Being a state legislator is a public service. Leaders, regardless of their role, must put service above self, the needs of their constituents before their own needs.

We have to elect legislators who view their duties in this light if we want them to set aside petty, partisan squabbling and begin to find real solutions for the people of Kansas.
I am suspicious of any effort to change the process of drawing legislative districts on the eve of a new round of redistricting. The Kansas constitution has clear guidelines for this process and it has served us well for over 150 years.