Gov. Jeff Colyer spoke with community members in St. John after stopping by Kansas Farm Bureau as part of his 105-county tour around the state.
There was standing room only when Governor Jeff Colyer made a scheduled appearance at the Kansas Farm Bureau office in St. John last Friday, but the more personal setting allowed for community members to voice concerns and mingle with the governor in an informal, less intimidating way.
Farm Bureau Financial Services Agent, John Falk, said the event had a good turnout at around 45 to 50 people, and it allowed the community the opportunity to hear the governor speak and ask questions.
“I think people appreciated what they heard,” Falk said. “It seemed well-received.”
While Falk said he prefers to stay neutral and not be affiliated with any particular candidate as a representative of Kansas Farm Bureau in St. John, he said he would be open to any candidate who wanted to hold an event to meet the community.
“We had a lot of questions about the water issues that are facing our area as far as farm is related, and he talked a lot about family and the state of the state and how they’re going to go forward,” Falk said. “I think a lot [of people] came just to listen, and I know I talked to a few people that were undecided voters, and that’s why they came.”
Mayor of St. John, Dakota Tucker, said that it is nice to see so many community members taking an interest in politics and wanting to hear what the governor had to say, even on such short notice.
“It’s so good to see people that want to get involved and try to do better because that’s all it is— That’s what it’s all about,” Tucker said. “To see people who want to get involved and who want to do better for not only our communities, our county, our district and our state but also our nation.”
Over this primary season, Tucker said he has seen at least three gubernatorial candidates come to St. John, including, Governor Jeff Colyer, republican candidate Jim Barnett, and independent candidate Richard Kloos.
Among the most pressing issues to be discussed during the event, Tucker said that the governor touched on topics relating to water issues, unemployment, school funding and the economy, however, community members had questions on a variety of different issues.
“When elected officials or people who are thinking about running for public office want to get out there and want to just speak to the public and hold these kinds of events—I think it’s great,” Tucker said.
Colyer’s tour around the state comes just before Tuesday’s primary election—an election which will also see two of St. John’s own citizens vying for a spot in the state legislature—Incumbent Greg Lewis and opponent, Brett Fairchild.
Tucker said that when he spoke with the workers at the polling location, they said they anticipated the voter turnout being about 25 percent for this election, though the voters were still coming in so it was hard to tell.
“They said they anticipated that voter turnout was supposed to be maybe 25% or so, but they felt that Stafford County itself was going to be a little bit higher because of the 113th district with Greg Lewis and Brett Fairchild,” Tucker said. “So, I think turnout is up in that respect.”
On his way out of town, Colyer made a stop at Tiger Town Pizza, where he met a few more constituents before continuing on with his statewide tour.