The Freedom Index published by Kansas Policy Institute has repeatedly shown the legislative political division to not be about Democrats and Republicans but about legislators’ view of the role of government, and the above June 2 update of 2017 Freedom Index certainly bears that out. With a score of 50 percent being considered neutral, there are 13 Senators at the top of the list with positive scores and 13 Senators at the bottom of the list – and every one of them is a Republican. Republicans are represented by red bars in the above chart and Democrats are shown in blue.
An informed citizenry is an essential element of maintaining a free society. Having a deeper understanding of how legislation impacts education freedom, economic freedom and the constitutional principles of individual liberty and limited government allows citizens to better understand the known and often unknown consequences of legislative issues.
Some legislators have a strong philosophical belief in an expanding government, while others are grounded in a strong philosophical belief in limited government. And there are some – probably the majority – for whom the primary litmus test is more circumstantial rather than a strong philosophical belief about the role of government. Quite often, those without a clear track record of a philosophical position vote in ways that favor government and special interests over the constitutional principles of limited government and personal freedom. Government also is the dividing line on education issues. Debates on school choice issues, for example, often come down to whether the interests of individual students or school districts should prevail.
The Kansas Freedom Index is intended to provide educational information to the public about broad economic and education issues that are important to the citizens of our State. It is the product of nonpartisan analysis, study, and research and is not intended to directly or indirectly endorse or oppose any candidate for public office.