Merrick Re-elected Speaker, KCK’s Burroughs Get Kansas House Minority Spot

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) – Republicans in the Kansas House have re-elected Speaker Ray Merrick to the chamber’s top leadership position.

And House Democrats turned Monday to veteran state Rep. Tom Burroughs of Kansas City to lead them for the next two years.

The House’s 125 members and members-elect had organizational meetings at the Statehouse to pick leaders for 2015 and 2016.

Merrick easily overcame a challenge within the GOP from Rep. Virgil Peck of Tyro. The vote among Republicans was 80-16.

The GOP will have a 97-28 majority when the Legislature reconvenes in January.

Democrats had to pick a new Minority Leader because Paul Davis of Lawrence gave up his House seat to run unsuccessfully for governor.

Burroughs won the minority leader’s job over Rep. Jim Ward of Wichita in a 17-11 vote.

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