Questions for Laura Kelly following her State of the State Address

TOPEKA, KS – The Kansas Republican Party today issued the following questions for Governor Laura Kelly after she delivered her State of the State Address yesterday evening: 

According to the Kansas Hospital Association, a half dozen hospitals in Kansas still haven’t received their vaccine allotment. What is going on at the Kansas Department of Health and Environment? Why haven’t these hospitals received their allotments when the state received the vaccine nearly a month ago?
In her address last night, Governor Kelly said Kansas is in the “top tier” for vaccines administered. Kansas currently ranks 32nd among US states and territories in vaccine administration. How is ranking in the lower half of states considered “top tier?”

For comparison, regional states and their ranks in vaccines administered per capita:

South Dakota – 3rd
North Dakota – 4th
Oklahoma – 10th
Colorado – 12th
Nebraska – 13th
Texas – 19th
Iowa – 20th



Kansas – 32nd

Kansas is, in fact, top tier in new cases per capita and deaths per capita over the last week. Kansas ranks 21st in new cases and *2nd* in new deaths. Again for comparison to our regional neighbors in new cases per capita:

Oklahoma – 4th
Kansas – 21st
Texas – 23rd
Iowa – 34th
Nebraska – 38th 
Colorado – 41st 
South Dakota – 42nd
North Dakota – 49th 

New deaths per capita:

Kansas – 2nd



Nebraska – 14th
South Dakota – 17th
Texas – 25th
North Dakota – 31st 
Oklahoma – 32nd
Colorado – 34th
Iowa – 38th

In her address last night, Governor Kelly also deliberately misled Kansans on her decision to group prisoners with vulnerable seniors and frontline workers in Phase 2 of the vaccine distribution. In her speech, Governor Kelly first mentioned seniors (which she thankfully moved into Phase 2 after pressure from Attorney General Schmidt, Speaker Ryckman, and others). Then, she mentioned essential frontline workers, making it clear to someone watching the speech they are part of the same Phase 2. However, she then noted “as we continue our phased approach…” and proceeded to pair congregate living (prisoners) with those with medical risks below 65 and other essential workers.

Transcript of the relevant portion of the speech:
The way Governor Kelly grouped together these different populations in her speech does not match her administration’s vaccine distribution plan, which clearly groups congregate settings (prisoners) with vulnerable seniors in Phase 2 and those with medical risks below 65 and other essential workers in Phase 3.

Governor Kelly’s plan:  
Why is Governor Kelly misleading the public with regard to which phases certain portions of the population will be vaccinated?

The answer is the governor knows Kansans want vulnerable law-abiding seniors to get the vaccine before the prison population. She deliberately grouped congregate living (prisoners) in a lower tier in her speech to avoid controversy. She should have to explain why she is misleading the public on such an important issue – one which her administration already lacks serious credibility due to its poor performance.