Kansas Democratic Party
|Senate leader||Anthony Hensley|
|House leader||Tom Burroughs|
|National affiliation||Democratic Party|
|Seats in the Upper House||
8 / 40
|Seats in the Lower House||
28 / 125
Since its founding as a territory, Kansas politics have been largely dominated by the Kansas Republican Party and in 1857 the Kansas Democratic Party was formed in an attempt to curb this trend by writing a constitution which would make Kansas a pro-slavery state. This constitution, which was written in Lecompton, Kansas, was boycotted by many of the free-stater's and seen as illegitimate. Eventually a free-state constitution was drafted in Topeka and was adopted. The Kansas Democratic Party has not been able to send a U.S. Senator to Washington since 1939, a record currently unmatched by any state party in America, Republican or Democratic. Kansas Democrats haven't controlled the Kansas Senate since 1917, the only period in which Democrats have ever held a majority in the upper house, and the Democrats have had only three non-consecutive two-year periods of majority control in the Kansas House of Representatives, the last being in 1991. Since becoming a state there have been 11 Governors from the Democratic Party, 6 of which came after 1961. In the 2000s the Kansas Democratic Party was able to win statewide offices and make gains in the Kansas Legislature by benefiting from tension in the Kansas Republican Party between its conservative and moderate wings. These gains, however, were erased in the 2010 Kansas elections as the Kansas Democratic Party saw its worst defeat on a ballot since 1954. The Kansas Democratic Party candidates lost every statewide office race (including U.S. Senator), every congressional race, and suffered a loss of 14 members in the state House of Representatives.
Since 1895 the Kansas Democratic Party has hosted the annual Washington Day consisting of one weekend of caucus meetings, dinners, receptions, and ending with an address from a keynote speaker. It is traditionally held in Kansas' capitol Topeka. The keynote speech has historically been a proving ground for future Democratic candidates for President of the United States including William Jennings Bryan, and Presidents Woodrow Wilson, Harry S. Truman, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama. Vice Presidents Alben Barkley, Al Gore and Joe Biden have also given keynote speeches at Washington Day.
Current elected officials
Members of Congress
The last Democrat to represent the state in Congress was Dennis Moore of Lenexa, who served as the representative for the 3rd District from 1999 until 2011. He did not seek re-election in 2010 and was subsequently replaced by Republican Kevin Yoder.
George McGill, who served from 1930 until 1939, was the last Democrat to serve as a United States Senator from Kansas; the state has since exclusively been represented by Republicans in that body, representing the longest losing streak by either party in any of the fifty states.
- Oletha Faust-Goudeau – District 29
- Marci Francisco – District 2
- David Haley – District 4
- Anthony Hensley – District 19
- Tom Holland – District 3
- Barbara Ballard –District 44
- Tom Burroughs –District 33
- Sydney Carlin –District 66
- Marti Crow – District 41
- Nile Dillmore –District 92
- Bill Feuerborn – District 5
- Gail Finney – District 84
- Geraldine Flaharty – District 98
- Stan Frownfelter – District 31
- Doug Gatewood – District 1
- Sean Gatewood – District 57
- Raj Goyle – District 87
- Bob Grant – District 2
- Broderick Henderson – District 35
- Jerry Henry – District 63
- Dennis Highberger – District 46
- Harold Lane – District 58
- Judith Loganbill –District 86
- Ann Mah – District 53
- Melody McCray-Miller – District 89
- Melanie Meier – District 40
- Janice Pauls – District 102
- Mike Peterson – District 37
- Eber Phelps – District 111
- Louis Ruiz – District 32
- Mike Slattery – District 24
- Annie Tietze – District 56
- Ed Trimmer – District 78
- Ponka-We Victors – District 103
- Jim Ward – District 88
- Vincent Wetta – District 80
- Jerry Williams – District 8
- Valdenia Winn – District 34
- Chair Lee Kinch (Derby)
Prominent past party officials
- Dennis Moore (Congressman 1999–2011)
- Mark Parkinson (Governor 2009–11)
- Kathleen Sebelius (Governor 2003–09, U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services 2009–14)
- Nancy Boyda (Congresswoman 2007–09)
- Joan Finney (Governor 1991–95)
- Jim Slattery (Congressman 1983–95)
- John W. Carlin (Governor 1979–87)
- Dan Glickman (Congressman 1977–95, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture 1995–2001)
- Martha Elizabeth Keys (Congresswoman 1975–78)
- William R. Roy (Congressman 1971–75)
- Robert Docking (Governor 1967–75)
- George Docking (Governor 1957–61)
- James Floyd Breeding (Congressman 1957–63)
- John Mills Houston (Congressman 1933–43, National Labor Relations Board Member 1943–53)
- Georgia Neese Clark (Treasurer of the United States 1949–53)
- George McGill (U.S. Senator 1931–39)
- Jouett Shouse (Congressman 1915–19)
- Guy T. Helvering (Congressman 1913–19, Commissioner of Internal Revenue 1933–43)
- William Augustus Ayres (Congressman 1915–21, 1923–34)
- Stampp, Kenneth M. "America in 1857: A Nation on the Brink". Oxford University Press, 1990. p. 150-154
- Office of Secretary of State. "Kansas History", August 1,2011.
- Slevin, Peter (2006-10-19). ""Moderates in Kansas Decide They're Not in GOP Anymore," Washington Post" (English). The Washington Post. Retrieved 2007-03-10.
- Wickham, DeWayne (2006-06-05). ""Kansas Political Shifts Sign Of Things To Come?," USA Today" (English). Retrieved 2007-03-10.
- ""Kansas Republicans Evolve -- Into Democrats," Salon" (English). Retrieved 2007-03-10.
- ""Clinton To Speak," Wichita Eagle" (English). Retrieved 2007-03-10.
- Regan Porter (2015-10-03). "The Kansas Democratic Party elects a new chair". WIBW.com. Retrieved 2015-10-04.