Court halts Kobach’s voter registration system

Voters can access the full ballots, no matter how they registered
Voters can access the full ballots, no matter how they registered

TOPEKA and GARDEN CITY, Kan. (KSNW) — A blow to Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach today. A judge permanently blocked his dual voter registration system, saying he lacks the authority to create a two-tiered system.

It’s a win for the ACLU.

“It’s not legal,” said Micah Kubic, Executive Director of the Kansas ACLU, “it’s not authorized, and most importantly, it’s not right because people shouldn’t be stopped from voting in state and local elections just based on the form they decided to fill out.”

Under the voter citizenship law, championed by Kobach, Kansans who registered to vote with a federal form at the DMV could only cast a vote for federal races.

If they registered using the state form, they had to also show proof of citizenship, like their passport or birth certificate, to be able to vote in all local state and federal races.

Now 19,000 Kansas in question will be able to cast a full ballot.

“So what it means is that folks who are registered to vote will be able to vote in all elections,” said Kubic. “Federal, state, local, no matter how they chose to register.”

County clerks assure voters that no matter how they registered, they won’t notice a change. All registrations will get the same ballot.

“Those people registered with the federal form are on the poll books and have been voting regular ballots and can go online and look at their sample ballots and all of that,” said Seward County Clerk Stacia Long.

We reached out to Kobach’s office, but nobody was available to comment on the judge’s ruling.