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Kansas Governor Sam Brownback tight-lipped about his future

Won't address rumors about job with Trump team
Posted at 5:49 PM, Jun 01, 2017

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback had a couple of chances Thursday, but he declined to address persistent rumors he may soon take a job with the Trump Administration.

One rumor is Brownback is a top contender for the now vacant U.S. Ambassador for Religious Freedom post.

At a ribbon cutting for a new soccer complex in Kansas City, Kansas, the 41 Action News Investigators asked the governor if the Trump Administration had approached him about the position.

"I've not made any comments about anything regarding the administration." Brownback said. "But rumors and rumors and rumors for a long time, so I just haven't made any comments, not going to make any comments."

When asked by the 41 Action News Investigators if he had any interest in the position at all, the governor replied, "I'm just not making any comment, nice try, and I haven't. I think it's been months people have been rumored about all sorts of different positions."

While the governor was at the soccer complex ribbon cutting, rumors he may punt his job in Topeka for one in the nation's capital came on the same day Kansas lawmakers were meeting in conference to work out a new school funding formula.

Lawmakers have also struggled to pass a new budget and to iron out the state's tax policy.

Brownback says it's the nature of the legislative process to wait until time is running out to get issues resolved.

"There's an old saying you've got to get a walnut up against the wall to crack it," he said. "Any legislative body I've been in, this is the way it works."

The governor and some state lawmakers have also been at odds over tax policy.

The lawmakers have taken aim at the governor's tax breaks for small businesses in order to balance the state budget.

Brownback says he's willing to compromise and increase taxes a bit on small businesses, but with limits.

"And people are now talking about a billion plus tax increase which I just think is way over the top," he said. "We shouldn't lose sight of the target here, this is about small business growth, we do it for big business."

The governor says he's working with the legislature on all these issues.

When the 41 Action News Investigators asked Brownback if he can tell the people of Kansas he's going to finish his term as governor, he replied, "I'm not announcing anything one way or the other about the Trump Administration or any opportunities there. I haven't since last year when he was elected and I'm not starting now."