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Politics, Elections and Government

Kansas Senator David Haley Joins Race For Kansas City, Kansas, Mayor

Andy Marso
Kansas News Service

The race for Mayor and CEO of the Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas was quietly moving toward the August primary.

That was until Tuesday, when veteran state Sen. David Haley filed to take on incumbent Mark Holland, who filed for re-election back in February.

Usually, you would expect the challenger to come out blazing, with all kinds of reasons to boot the incumbent. Not Haley. “I don’t think Mark Holland has done anything wrong.”

In fact Haley, who has been in the Kansas Legislature since 1995, says Holland has done "an excellent job." But he calls the incumbent "a place holder" with no vision for the fast growing county.

“A visionary leader, one who is truly committed to ensuring not only the viability and enhancement of our Village West but looks to the other three villages that are under-represented, village north, village east and village south, will lift all boats,” Haley says.

Holland doesn't see it that way at all. "I think we're doing a great job," says Holland, who was elected in 2013 and served on the Unified Government's Board of Commissioners before that. "I have a clear vision to grow the economy."

Unified Government

Holland says Wyandotte County has had $2.8 billion in investment in his four years as mayor and has added 11,000 jobs.

The August 1 non-partisan primary has three other contenders; David Alvey who serves as an at-large member of the Board of Public Utilities, Janice Grant Witt who also ran for mayor in 2013, and D. Keith Jordon who you may know as T-Bone on KQRC-FM, The Rock. Jordon is new to politics. 

Sam Zeff covers education for KCUR and the Kansas News Service and is co-host of the political podcast Statehouse Blend Kansas. Follow him on Twitter @SamZeff.

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