Saturday, March 03, 2007

Kansas: Domestic partner registry may be heading to the full House

By Diane Silver

Here's some bad news to start the weekend: The House Federal and State Affairs Committee is planning next week to work -- and possibly vote -- on a bill banning domestic partner registries throughout Kansas.

Because Fed and State Affairs is packed with ultra conservatives, the committee is likely to approve the bill and pass it on to the full House for a vote.

The Lawrence Journal-World reports that committee chair Rep. Arlen Siegfreid, R-Olathe, says he no longer believes HB 2299 would infringe on the home rule authority of cities. Thus, he plans to work the bill this coming week.

Honestly, it's a tad difficult to see how 2299 does NOT infringe on home rule authority. After all the bill was proposed after the Lawrence City Commission began talking about creating a registry. This bill would reach out of Topeka and slam it's clammy hand down on top of my local City Commission, stopping Lawrence's municipal process in it's tracks.

If that doesn't conflict with home rule, I don't know what does.

Call your representative NOW. If you don't know who represents your district in the House, visit this web site. The members of the House Federal and State Affairs Committee can be found on this pdf.

By the way, that's Siegfreid in the photo.


Mike said...

Unfortunately, this passing the House is almost a sure thing. Hopefully we can stop it in the Senate. What is your take on how the Senate will respond to this? At a minimum, if it passes with less then 2/3 support it won't be able to survive a veto by the governor.

Diane Silver said...

I agree with you that passage in the conservative House is probably almost a sure thing. I'm not certain how to read the Senate on this, yet. I agree that the Senate is more moderate.

One of the biggest factors will be what we do and what other fair-minded Kansans do. If we contact our representatives and senators and tell them of our displeasure, we have a chance.