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Kansas Lawmakers Question Kelly's Use Of Emergency Powers Before Fleeing Coronavirus Threat

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Jim McLean
Kansas News Service
KS Gov. Laura Kelly at a Statehouse news conference at which she outlined steps aimed at helping small businesses that have shut down in an attempt to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Kansas lawmakers approved a basic budget this week before heading home to await whatever the coronavirus has in store for the state and their communities.

They’re hoping to reconvene in late April to wrap up their work for the year. But they left knowing they might not have an opportunity to resolve their differences on several big issues, including Medicaid expansion and a constitutional amendment on abortion.

On their way out of town, some Republican lawmakers questioned whether Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly was properly using her authority to respond to the coronavirus emergency. Citing her decision to close schools for the remainder of the academic year, they accused her of overreacting. 

In this week's podcast, Kelly defends her actions in an interview with host Jim McLean.

Jim McLean is an editor and reporter for KCUR 89.3. He is the managing director of KCUR's Kansas News Service, a collaboration between KCUR and other public media stations across Kansas.