Kansas needs an economy that works for everyone, where the road map to opportunity and the middle class is available to all.  

During the Great Recession unemployment and wage stagnation dealt a crushing blow to the middle class.  Today, more than five years after the end of the recession, far too many families still struggle to get back on their feet. 

In 2007, 11.2 percent of the population in Kansas lived in poverty.  In 2014 the poverty rate had yet to drop to the pre-recession level: 13.6 percent of Kansans lived in poverty.

Among children the poverty rate is higher.  In 2014, 17.7 percent of children lived in poverty, compared to 14.6 percent in 2007

This is a reality that will not change until we face the fact that too many jobs in Kansas do not pay enough to allow families even a very modest life style.

We can do better. Government can play an important role by partnering with business, planning for the future, and making investments in education, infrastructure, research and the health of its population.  That is how the government supported the creation of the great American middle class in the 1950s and 60s - and how it can do so again.