For 10 of my nearly 20 years in the Kansas Senate, it has been my privilege to work side-by-side with Sen. Derek Schmidt of Independence. I can honestly say he is one of the most outstanding and capable legislators with whom I have served.
From day one, Derek Schmidt stood head and shoulders above the crowd — literally and figuratively. He is blessed with a quick analytical mind and an innate sense for good law and public policy. Through the years, his colleagues and I have come to rely more and more on his ability to interpret written law and to craft strong legislation. He is always courteous and fair in his dealings with people, whether they be fellow legislators, visiting dignitaries, staff or constituents. Derek's ability to achieve consensus from disparate viewpoints is well known and respected throughout the halls of the Capitol. He has used the power and authority of the Senate Majority Leader's Office judiciously and equitably. He will not come to the AG's office with some personal, hidden agenda.
Derek Schmidt's legislative accomplishments demonstrate his commitment to making Kansas a safe place to live, work and raise a family. His efforts to preserve and enhance public safety are unparalleled. Derek championed the successful fight against the methamphetamine industry in our state, stepping up enforcement and penalties for those who engage in the production and sale of this destructive drug. He stood on the front lines to battle child pornography, human trafficking and sex offenders. He wrote the law to protect the rights of mourners — particularly at military funerals — against hatemongers and offensive picketing.
At the same time, Derek Schmidt fought to protect our personal property rights. He wrote the law to restore the right of self-defense for Kansans defending their homes against intruders. In an era of increased concern about terrorism, Sen. Schmidt wrote the law to safeguard our food supply and agricultural resources. Recognizing the burden they pose to the legal system, he crafted legislation to reduce and prevent frivolous and nuisance lawsuits.
He will be the strong advocate for justice and fair law enforcement needed to protect Kansans from criminals and crimes of all kinds. He will dedicate himself to creating a legal environment in the state that encourages strong investment while discouraging those who would take advantage of our more vulnerable citizens — our seniors, our children and those who have disabilities. A fifth-generation Kansan, Senate Majority Leader Derek Schmidt is extremely well suited in education, experience and temperament to serve with intelligence, integrity and compassion in the critically important office of Attorney General. I respectfully encourage you to join me in voting for Derek Schmidt for Kansas Attorney General in the 2010 general election.
STEPHEN R. MORRIS,
Morris is president of the Kansas Senate.