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Kansas Republican lawmaker switches to Dem party, calls GOP's LGBTQ stance 'absurd'

Also takes issue with party position on Medicaid, gun control

JOSH EDELSON/AFP/Getty Images

Kansas State Sen. Barbara Bollier spent 43 years as a registered Republican and 10 years as a GOP lawmaker. But now she's switching parties because of Republicans' stance on LGBTQ issues and other causes.

"My moral compass is saying, 'I can't do this anymore,' and you throw that in with Donald Trump, and just from a moral position, I can't be complicit anymore," Bollier said in an interview with NBC News.

What happened?

Earlier this year, the Kansas Republican Party updated its platform with the following language: "We believe God created two genders, male and female. Therefore, as defined by the Kansas Constitution, the benefits and privileges of marriage exist only between one man and one woman."

"It's absurd," Bollier said.

She told NBC News:

When the party adopted an anti-transgender piece to their platform that really, as a physician, set me over the edge, because we have more than XX and XY, and gender is a very complicated and important thing.

Bollier has long reached across the political aisle and she endorsed Democrats Laura Kelly for governor and Sharice Davids for Congress. State Senate President Susan Wagle removed Bollier as vice chairwoman of the governing body's health committee in July after Bollier endorsed the two candidates.

The Kansas Republican Party earlier this year modified the wording of its platform to read: "We believe God created two genders, male and female. Therefore, as defined by the Kansas Constitution, the benefits and privileges of marriage exist only between one man and one woman."

What else did she complain about?

Bollier also told the news outlet she was opposed to the Kansas GOP's stance on Medicaid expansion and gun violence prevention matters.

She said gun violence is a "crisis, including suicide."

Bollier represents State Senate District 7, which she says is "very moderate" and has traditionally elected moderate Republicans for a long time." The district includes suburban areas of Kansas City.

One last thing…
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