Kansas considers giving governor more say in high court

Gov. Sam Brownback (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)

TOPEKA, Kansas (AP) – Kansas lawmakers are considering giving the governor more authority over who is appointed to the state Supreme Court.

A proposed constitutional amendment to change the selection system received first-round approval in the House on Wednesday. It advanced to a final vote that could occur Thursday.

The measure needs approval from two-thirds of the House’s members to advance to the Senate.

With major cases on school funding and abortion restrictions now pending before the high court, Republican Gov. Sam Brownback and his allies are seeking to change its makeup.

Currently, a panel led by attorneys chooses three finalists for each Supreme Court vacancy. The governor makes the appointment, with no role for legislators.

The proposal before the House would allow the governor would nominate justices, subject to Senate confirmation.

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