The Ripon Forum

Volume 51, No. 6

December 2017

Ripon Profile of Lynn Jenkins

By on December 8, 2017

…from the Fall 2013 edition:

Name: Lynn Jenkins

Occupation: U.S. Representative, Kansas’ 2nd District

Before your election to Congress, you served in the Kansas State Legislature, and were the State Treasurer, as well. What prompted you to run for public office in the first place? I saw an opportunity to make a difference for folks in my community, because I wasn’t particularly pleased with how either party was handling fiscal matters. I wanted to make things better for Kansas families, and help provide a secure future with more opportunities for my kids and their generation.

You’re one of only 10 Certified Public Accountants currently serving in the U.S. House of Representatives. How has your training as a CPA shaped your perspective in office? As a CPA, and a former state treasurer, I’m a numbers nerd, and I know when the math doesn’t work. Racking up trillions of dollars in debt has grave consequences for our nation’s economy, and we cannot afford to continue to ignore our unsustainable spending problem that is largely driven by mandatory spending programs. If we want these programs to be around and adequately provide for future generations we must start fixing them now.

You’re also one of only 19 Republican women serving in the House.  Why do you think there are so few of you, and what do you think needs to be done to reverse that trend? Women generally tend to be more hesitant about running for office, and oftentimes simply need to be asked. It’s important to help utilize and support our current Republican congresswomen, while encouraging other ladies to step up and join our strong conservative voice. I enjoy working with several organizations who reach out to women, recruit them for public office, and support them once they win like Maggie’s List, VIEWPAC, the National Federation of Republican Women, and the NRCC’s Project Grow.

As the Vice Chair of the House Republican Conference, how important do you think it is to have a woman at the leadership table? It is incredibly important. Women bring a unique perspective and set of skills to the work environment – especially moms – who tend to be great listeners, consensus-builders, and problem solvers. These qualities are what make us an asset when you need someone to get the job done. Having three women in House Republican Leadership is a big step forward, but we still have strides to make. I am confident as more women succeed and achieve, they will motivate more women to follow.

Let’s talk about issues. As a member of the Ways & Means Committee, are we going to see a tax reform bill this year? It has always been my hope, and the committee’s goal that we would see a bill this year, but we are in a challenging environment. Those of us on Ways and Means have been working for the last few years talking with our constituents and colleagues in an effort to lay the foundation to move forward on comprehensive, pro-growth tax reform. I applaud Chairman Camp for his leadership on this truly vital economic issue, and the committee remains committed to making sure we get the job done.

How about the Farm Bill – how important is that legislation to the people you represent back home? Considering Kansas is the bread basket of the world, the Farm Bill is imperative to Kansas, and not only the farmers and ranchers. Agriculture commodities alone bring $15 billion in economic benefits to Kansas. We need a five-year Farm Bill, to give folks some certainty, and help them plan for the future. Our agriculture and nutrition policy both need serious reforms to work better for Kansans and the American people.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


If you enjoyed this article, subscribe now to receive more just like it.

Comments are closed.