Four high school students are running for Governor in the 2018 Kansas Gubernatorial election. The candidates includes Jack Bergeson, 16, and his running mate Alex Cline, 17, both from Wichita for the Democratic party. The Republican party includes Ethan Randleas,17, Wichita, Tyler Ruzich, 17, student at Shawnee Mission North, Dominic Scavuzzo, 17, student at Rockhurst High School, and Joseph Tutera Jr.,16, student at Mission Hills.
These teens have made quite the impression across the country. Jimmy Kimmel interviewed Bergeson, the first of the teens to run. As most of Kimmel’s interviews, it was comical but informative. It gave Bergeson an opportunity to show the world what he is doing.
“I think a lot of people would roll their eyes or raise their eyebrows at it. But I’m here to win,” Ruzich said in an interview with The Kansas City Star.
Kansas, as well as a few other states do not set any age qualifications to run for governor as well as a few other state offices. Lucy Steyer, 17, of Lenexa is running for the office of Kansas Secretary of State.
“I’m most definitely excited to be a part of the movement to engage young voters and to encourage political involvement among all ages,” Steyer said in an interview with The Hutchinson News.
Some may think that this is just a publicity stunt for the teens to run for governor. For the teens, it is an opportunity to gain experience for future, higher positions they may seek.
“Show me the facts, and I’ll follow the facts. Show me both sides of the coin. I’ll listen to both sides wholeheartedly,” Bergeson said in an interview with Newsweek.
Without circulating petitions, a candidate pays $2,207 to file a governor team. A candidate who gathers 5,000 signatures pays $670.
These candidates have an interesting perspective on Sam Brownback’s politics. Whose aggressive tax cuts left the state with budget shortfalls and insufficient education funds. They were all in school during his policy implementations and experienced the challenges faced.
The teens also hope to encourage other youth to pursue their career in politics or running for an office.