The Kansas state capitol in Topeka.
Photographer: Kevin Mitchell KSHB-TV
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - Johnson County Republican Ray Merrick is the new speaker of the Kansas House.
Merrick won on a second ballot Monday over fellow Johnson County representative Arlen Siegfried.
Republicans elected Susan Wagle of Wichita as Senate president. Wagle is the first woman to lead either legislative chamber. She defeated Steve Abrams of Arkansas City.
When the session begins in January, Republicans will outnumber Democrats 32-8 in the Senate and 92-33 in the House.
Party primaries in August saw the conservative wing of the Republican Party oust several moderates, including Senate President Steve Morris. In the House, Speaker Mike O'Neal retired after 28 years in the chamber, including two terms as speaker.
Democrats re-elected Anthony Hensley, of Topeka, as Senate minority leader and Paul Davis, of Lawrence, as House minority leader.
Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Missouri welfare recipients would be barred from spending their cash benefits at casinos, liquor stores or strip clubs under legislation sent to Gov. Jay Nixon.