The newest member of the Kansas Legislature is 59 year old Les Mason (R) of McPherson.
Mason was picked Monday night by McPherson County Republican Precinct and Township Committeemen and Women to fill the unexpired Kansas House District 73 term of Clark Shultz (R). Shultz resigned the seat two weeks ago when he was selected to be the State Senator from Kansas Senate District 35. That seat had become vacant when longtime Senator Jay Emler (R) resigned from the State Senate to accept an appointment from Governor Sam Brownback to serve on the Kansas Corporation Commission.
In addition to Mason, seven other Republicans living in District 73 sought the House seat: Donald Hobson, Justin Bravi, James Toews, Phillip Hinman, Nick Reinecker, Jenny Goering and John Reimer.
There were 43 votes available at Monday’s meeting. In order to win, a candidate needed a majority of at least 22 votes. Mason got 21 votes on the first ballot and was declared the winner after getting 23 votes on the second ballot. Hobson finished second garnering 13 votes on both ballots.
Mason said following his election that he would like to serve on the House Ag and Commerce Committees.
His initial term will only last until January of 2015. He will be a candidate this summer in the House District 73 primary where he will most likely face at least one other Republican candidate.
Mason and his wife own the Old Muffin Factory in McPherson.