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Kansas lawmaker imposes dress code on female witnesses

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TOPEKA, Kan. — A Kansas Senate committee chairman has imposed a dress code that prohibits women testifying on an elections or ethics bill from wearing certain clothing while establishing no wardrobe restrictions exclusively for men.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that a rule of state Sen. Mitch Holmes’ 11-point code of conduct says “low-cut necklines and miniskirts” are inappropriate for women.

Holmes says he offered detailed guidance to women because he had observed provocatively clad women at the state Capitol. He says it’s a distraction to the Senate committee during testimony.

A group of bipartisan women senators says no chairman ought to place gender-specific demands on those inspired to share thoughts on public policy with legislative committees.

Holmes is the Republican chairman of the Senate Ethics and Elections Committee.