AP NEWS

The Latest: Lawmakers: Kelly court nominee should withdraw

March 18, 2019

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The Latest on Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly’s nominee to the state Court of Appeals (all times local):

3:55 p.m.

Kansas Senate President Susan Wagle and another key Republican say Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly’s nomination of a trial court judge for the state Court of Appeals should be withdrawn.

Wagle and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Rick Wilborn said Monday that they oppose Kelly’s nomination of Labette County District Judge Jeffry Jack. They cited tweets and retweets criticizing President Donald Trump and expressing support for gun control and abortion rights.

Kelly spokeswoman Ashley All called the Twitter posts “troubling” and said the governor’s office is looking into them.

Wagle predicted the GOP-controlled Senate would not confirm Jack.

Jack has been a Labette County district judge since 2005. Kelly nominated him Friday for an open seat on the state’s second-highest court.

Jack did not immediately return a telephone message seeking comment.

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2:15 p.m.

The Kansas Senate’s top leader says that she will oppose Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly’s nominee to the state Court of Appeals.

Senate President and conservative Wichita Republican Susan Wagle said Monday that nominee Jeffry Jack has a history of “pro-abortion” rhetoric, statements favoring gun control and criticism of President Donald Trump.

Wagle’s staff pointed to Jack’s social media tweets and retweets about gun violence, abortion and Trump. A picture of Jack appears on his Twitter page.

Jack has been a Labette County district judge since 2005. Kelly nominated him Friday for an open seat on the state’s second-highest court, and the appointment must be confirmed by the Senate.

Kelly spokeswoman Ashley All said her office is looking into the matter. Jack did not immediately return a telephone message seeking comment.