Conservative lawmakers want to require governor to get approval before state of emergency orders

Kansas

This computer screen capture from Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly’s page on Facebook shows her giving the annual State of the State address, Tuesday, Kan., Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021, in Topeka, Kan. Kelly says that given the recent mob violence in Washington, the state’s leaders must “must commit ourselves to set an example” of working together. (AP Photo/John Hanna)

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Conservative Republican lawmakers argue that Kansas shouldn’t be able shut down businesses during an emergency like the coronavirus pandemic.

Their comments Wednesday came as the GOP-controlled Legislature considered how far to go in restricting a governor’s power in future emergencies.

The state House gave first-round approval on a voice vote to a bill that would require governors to confer with the state’s attorney general and get legislative leaders’ approval before issuing executive orders during a state of emergency.

Some conservative Republicans wanted to go farther and ban business closures or even restrictions but acknowledged that Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly would never sign such legislation.

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