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Blog: Wishing All Kansans a Happy and Safe Labor Day


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Here's to wishing all Kansans a happy and safe Labor Day. On the first Monday of September, for more than 115 years, our country has celebrated the accomplishments and sacrifices of American workers.

Today, there are serious economic problems still facing Kansas that must be solved. This is why we need a business leader in the Governor's office. I'm running because I know how to create jobs and rebuild the economy. I'm a businessman, not a career politician. I'll work on behalf of all Kansans, regardless of ideology, income, or geography.

I've been proud to reach across the aisle and work with Republican leadership in the State Senate to protect our schools, protect vulnerable citizens, pass a transportation plan and protect our workers.

But there is still much to do. We know that companies want to locate in states where the workforce is trained and the schools are good. So we must continue to invest in our public schools and technical training programs. That's why the Holland / Kultala administration will be focused on creating jobs by continuing to invest in education and workforce training.

As we move out of this recession, it will be the working men and women of Kansas, from every sector, leading the way. Public employees have been asked to do more with less, and their work should be commended, not denigrated.

As a State Senator, I was proud to sponsor and pass legislation that stopped the practice of outsourcing state services to foreign countries. When SRS had outsourced a call center overseas, I stepped up and put a stop to it.

I've also been a leader in the Kansas legislature in the effort to crack down on employers who intentionally misclassify workers. I wrote the legislation holding accountable those unscrupulous employers who would exploit Kansas workers. As Governor, I will continue to make sure that we put Kansans first.

And I will not allow the special interests to weaken our workers' compensation laws. Workers are not disposable, and where there is harm, there must be justice.

All Kansans understand how important a healthy transportation infrastructure is to our state's economic interests. This past session I was particularly proud to vote for the new Comprehensive Transportation Program -- and I voted to pay for it. This project will create tens of thousands of jobs over the next decade, jobs that should be filled by the hardworking men and women right here in Kansas.

And as a ranking member of Commerce and Labor committee, I was on the front lines in successfully fighting off efforts to cut unemployment benefits last session.

Ultimately, this election is about asking ourselves what kind of Kansas we want to live in. Do we want a Kansas where every child can attend a great public school and realize his or her potential? Where every Kansan can find a quality job right here in Kansas and provide for their family? Where men and women can organize to ensure safe working conditions and fair wages? Where the elderly and the vulnerable will treated with dignity and respect? I believe we do. And that's why we'll win this November!

- Tom

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