On this sleepy Monday after Thanksgiving, it's time to shake the cobwebs out of the brain and take a look around. This morning we offer both the good and the awful of politics. First up is a note of possible Kansas pride. Second is yet more on one of the state's enduring shames.
Apologies to Kathleen Sebelius for putting her in the same post as Fred Phelps.
First the fun. Steve and Cokie Roberts name Kansas' recently re-elected governor as the best bet to become president in 2008. The well-connected columnists note that our governor fits all five of their rules for winning. Hat tip to WE Blog for the link.
So who fits all of these rules? What about Gov. Kathleen Sebelius of Kansas, a Democrat who won re-election by 17 points in a deeply red Midwestern state? A gun-owning, budget-balancing mother of two sons who grew up in Ohio (where her dad, John Gilligan, was a Democratic governor), she moved to Kansas for grad school and married into an old Republican family (her late father-in-law succeeded Bob Dole in Congress and served 12 years). You heard it here first.This morning we're also treated to the Topeka Capital-Journal's up-close-and-personal view of Topeka's Phelps family watching a new film about themselves. The documentary was the result of a year of work by Ryan Jones, a senior at the University of Kansas.
Two things stand out in this portrait of a popcorn-munching Phelps clan.
First, there is the bone-chilling moment when one of the family's children speaks on camera about "wanting to kill gays." The watching Phelps respond by erupting in delighted laughter.
Also of interest is the fact that the patriarch of the family, Fred himself, was not present at the gathering. Perhaps the rumors of Fred being ill are true.
The film, by the way, looks like it's worth seeing. It will be shown at 7 p.m. Wednesday in Woodruff Auditorium in the Kansas Union at KU. The viewing is free.