Teen candidate for Kansas governor says he’s campaigning against ‘old man principles’

Teen candidate for Kansas governor says he’s campaigning against ‘old man principles’
© History Channel

One of the teenagers who launched a gubernatorial bid in Kansas this year is taking direct shots at some of his older challengers.

17-year-old Tyler Ruzich, a Republican who is among six teens running for the state's highest office, told The Washington Post in an interview that "old man principles" like those held by current elected officials aren't working for the country.

Ruzich told the Post that the Founding Fathers envisioned the U.S. as a land where citizens his age could hold positions of responsibility and authority, adding that they likely didn't envision a reality television star such as President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump goes after Cassidy after saying he wouldn't support him for president in 2024 Jan. 6 panel lays out criminal contempt case against Bannon Hillicon Valley — Presented by Xerox — Agencies sound alarm over ransomware targeting agriculture groups MORE holding office.


“You know, lots of people ask me, what can you, Tyler Ruzich, do for people my age?” he said. "I say, we keep continuing these old man principles that aren’t working. In [Alexander] Hamilton’s time, someone my age could be commander of a frigate. Did the Founding Fathers consider that a 17-year-old might be governor? I don’t know."

"Did they consider that a reality-television businessman would become president of the United States after losing the popular vote? Probably not,” he added.

Ruzich is one of six teenagers who filed to run in the state. A report from The Kansas City Star last year revealed state law required no qualifications for running for governor.

The resulting media stories led to a flurry of candidates, including a dog, 3-year-old Angus P. Woolley, whose owner filed for the dog to run in February.

State officials reacted with a bill establishing age and species requirements for running for governor.

“We have age requirements on voters,” state Rep. Keith Esau (R), told The Kansas City Star. “Anybody who’s running should be able to vote for themselves.”