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WSU Newsline: Parkinson a bold, focused governor
Tuesday, September 21, 2010 9:00 AM

The scripts are available for printing and for sound bite identification. 

Go to http://www.wichita.edu/newsline to get the current Wichita State University Newsline. If you cannot access the Newsline at the Web address above, contact Joe Kleinsasser at (316) 978-3013 or cell (316) 204-8266 or joe.kleinsasser@wichita.edu. Newsline cuts may be edited to suit your needs.

If you have additional questions for Ed Flentje after listening to the WSU Newsline, please call him at (316) 978-6526 or ed.flentje@wichita.edu.

Background:

Few Kansans could name the current lieutenant governor or any former lieutenant governor. However, Kansas Gov. Mark Parkinson may break the mold in this regard, according to Ed Flentje, a professor in the Hugo Wall School of Urban and Public Affairs at Wichita State University. 

Voice wrap:

Announcer: Few Kansans could name the current lieutenant governor or any former lieutenant governor. However, Kansas Gov. Mark Parkinson may break the mold in this regard, according to Ed Flentje, a professor in the Hugo Wall School of Urban and Public Affairs at Wichita State University.

Flentje: "The job of lieutenant governor is somewhat of an enigma. Some governor's have effectively used the position; others have not. But in most cases, folks cannot identify the name of a lieutenant governor."

Announcer: Former Lt. Gov. Mark Parkinson was elevated to the Kansas governorship by the departure of Kathleen Sebelius to the Obama Cabinet on April 28, 2009. Flentje says Parkinson's brief governorship can in no way be described as caretaking. While not all Kansans agree with his results, Flentje says Parkinson has given Kansas a short but bold and focused governorship, and will be leaving the state in better stead than he found it. This is Joe Kleinsasser at Wichita State University. 

Sound bite #1

Flentje says Parkinson will be remembered for his very bold governorship. The sound bite is 21 seconds and the outcue is "bold governorship."

Flentje: "Mark Parkinson is the first Lieutenant Governor to serve as governor for more than a few weeks. And he has broken the mold in that regard, and will be remembered for his short, but very bold governorship." 

Sound bite #2

Flentje says that as governor, Parkinson immediately faced a drop of more than $400 million in state revenues. The sound bite is 35 seconds and the outcue is "in state spending."

Flentje: "As governor, Parkinson immediately faced over $400 million drop in state revenues and took on the task of reducing state spending in line with available revenues. And then, faced another almost $200 million drop, and recommended a sales tax to stave off further cuts in state spending."

Sound bite #3

Flentje says the budget cuts likely softened resistance to a one-cent sales tax. The sound bite is 24 seconds and the outcue is "by the wayside."

Flentje: "The budget cuts likely softened resistance to the proposed sales tax. And the fact that it was a simple, understandable three-year temporary one-cent sales tax, made it understandable, and other proposals fell by the wayside."

Sound bite #4

Flentje says Parkinson showed extraordinary leadership in renewable energy. The sound bite is 30 seconds and the outcue is "and jobs."

Flentje: "Parkinson has also shown extraordinary leadership in renewable energy. He negotiated a settlement over the western Kansas coal plant almost immediately, and has also put into, under way, actions that are expanding generating capacity for wind energy, transmission lines and jobs." 

Sound bite #5

Flentje says not running for reelection freed Parkinson from political constraints. The sound bite is 29 seconds and the outcue is "his leadership."

Flentje: "Parkinson, immediately on assuming the governorship, said that he would not run for election as governor. And whether this contributed to his ability to take bold, focused action would be speculation, but it certainly freed him from political constraints and appears to have emboldened his leadership."

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Parkinson recently announced that starting in January 2011, he will become president and CEO of the American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living.

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Contact: Ed Flentje, (316) 978-6526 or ed.flentje@wichita.edu.