Grandmother of five and former public school teacher Jill Sasse is running for Kansas City Council, prioritizing public safety and stopping government overreach to bring common sense back to local government.
Sasse, who has lived in the Kansas City area since she was 20 years old and has been teaching in some capacity for 36 years, is vying for KC’s 6th District-At-Large seat, opposing incumbent Andrea Bough.
Sasse became acutely aware of the importance of local elections during COVID-19 lockdowns when government overreach became all-too-apparent.
Sasse makes public safety her first priority, as she feels protecting law officers’ safety is paramount to protecting the rights of all Kansas Citians. If elected, she intends to fully support local law enforcement to combat the alarming rise in crime and record murder rates plaguing the city.
“My first priority is public safety. Everyone wants to be safe regardless of their skin color or zip code. We can’t function as a society under the current lawless conditions,” she told The Heartlander. “Let our police officers do their jobs and enforce the laws. First responders and members of the community are working hard to cultivate a climate of trust and respect. City officials should be encouraging this progress and careful not to undermine it.”
Next, she wants to put an end to government interference in residents’ lives and give the power back to the people — power that was taken away on the pretext of safety, social justice and other causes such as global warming.
“I want to resist the continuing encroachment of government running our lives,” she said. “Like many people, I became aware of the importance of local elections during the COVID lockdown. The loss of civil liberties was unprecedented.
“I believe we can balance our health concerns with our liberties as we have always done. By the end of the lockdown, it seemed to be more about power than protection. That was my wake-up call. What else was going on that wasn’t consistent with living in a free society?
“The cost of liberty is eternal vigilance,” she says, paraphrasing American abolitionist Wendell Phillips.
Sasse also feels local leaders have the responsibility to protect the rights of all their citizens, not to pick winners and losers in the name of a cause or social justice.
“I believe that the proper role of government is to protect our rights as set forth in our founding documents,” she says, arguing her opponent “has a more intrusive view of government’s role in our lives.”
Social justice is “favoring one group over another,” Sasse said. “That’s not justice. It’s divisive, focusing on our differences rather than what we have in common and how we can work together to serve one another.”
By enacting a “Right to Counsel” policy during the lockdowns to stop evictions, she says the city essentially chose sides in the name of social justice. She views the policy as one that “picks winners and losers” by giving emergency funds to lawyers to work against property owners, who “simply needed to pay their own bills.” Instead, she argues those same funds could have been used “to help tenants directly pay their rent,” appeasing both sides of the issue.
Sasse wants her campaign to represent hope for a better future for all Kansas Citians. She is actively engaging with the public to shape her public policy focus and wants her constituents to know she will be their voice if elected. She considers that the people, not the government, know best how to make that future a reality.
“I’m out and about having conversations with the voters. I love going to different neighborhoods and hearing people talk about their families, their jobs and their communities. In spite of their hardships, people are hopeful. These are commonsense people and they know what it takes to get our city back on track. Let’s mobilize our faith communities and create small volunteer organizations to address specific concerns across the city. We don’t need the government telling us how to care for our neighbors. Just kindly get out of our way and we can get to work.”
As an example, she says, “the city’s focus on aggressive climate change policies is wreaking havoc on our small businesses and our housing industry.”
“Small businesses are losing money because the new bike lanes have replaced customer parking spaces. The city’s rather hostile policies toward the housing industry are forcing independent housing providers to sell their properties (contributing to homelessness), while our homebuilders are passing on a $30,000 increase in cost to homebuyers. We need to listen to the people in these industries. They have commonsense solutions, and they understand the challenges.”
Sasse encourages those who want to get involved to contact her to share their thoughts, ideas and concerns or to volunteer.