Archive for the ‘Kansas Politics’ Category

Kansas Voter Lawsuit Advances
August 26, 2015

(AP) – A Kansas judge is allowing two voters to continue pursuing a lawsuit challenging how Secretary of State Kris Kobach is enforcing a proof of citizenship requirement for registering.
Shawnee County District Judge Franklin Theis (Tice) also suggested in an order that Kobach exceeded his authority in declaring that voters who use a federal form to register can cast ballots only in federal races. The federal form does not require proof of citizenship.
Theis issued an order last week rejecting Kobach’s request to decide the case in his favor before a trial. But the judge also didn’t block Kobach from enforcing the law as he has for more than a year.
ACLU attorney Julie Ebenstein on Wednesday called the ruling encouraging. Kobach said it’s still very early in the lawsuit

Kobach & Hillary Clinton Clash Over Voting List
August 26, 2015

(AP) – Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach is trading barbs over social media with Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton on voting rights.
The spat was sparked by Kobach’s proposal to throw out after 90 days names of more than 34,000 potential voters who registered in the state, but didn’t provide proof-of-citizenship documents like a birth certificate or naturalization papers.
Clinton’s campaign late Monday posted a comment on Twitter calling the plan a “targeted attack on voting rights,” including a link to a story from The Associated Press about it.
Koback retorted the next day on Facebook that it is not a purge as “left-wing knuckleheads” claim because those people just have to fill out another voter registration form again. He said Clinton is “getting her pantsuit in a twist over nothing.”

Brownback Says No to Gitmo Again
August 25, 2015

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback and South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley are on the offense on Gitmo.
The two governors sent a letter to Defense Secretary Ash Carter Tuesday, warning the Defense Department (DOD) from transferring Guantanomo Bay detainees into Kansas or South Carolina.
The two Governors letter says they “will not be part of any illegal and ill-advised action by the Administration, especially when that action relates to importing terrorists into our states.”
The statement from Governor Brownback says DOD teams have been in Kansas to assess the possibility of transferring some detainees to the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks at Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas.
The other option under consideration is the U.S. Consolidated Naval Brig in South Carolina.
Brownback and Haley say bringing the detainees to anyplace in the United States is an insult to the people who died in the attack on September 11, 2001.

Wichita Election Officials Fight Voting Records Release
August 25, 2015

(AP) – Top election officials in Kansas and Sedgwick County have asked a court to block the release of voting machine tapes sought by a Wichita mathematician who is researching statistical anomalies in election counts.
Secretary of State Kris Kobach argued in a court filing made public Monday that the records sought by Wichita State University mathematician Beth Clarkson are not subject to the Kansas open records act, and that their disclosure are prohibited by Kansas statute.
Kobach also contended he is not the custodian of records kept by the Sedgwick County Elections Commissioner Tabitha Lehman from the November 2014 general election.
Lehman told a Sedgwick County District Court judge in a separate filing last week that production of the tapes would be “unnecessarily burdensome” because the material cannot be easily copied.

Lobbyst Freebees Force Long Time Statehouse Snack Shop to Close
August 11, 2015

(AP) – A vendor who has provided concessions at the Kansas Statehouse for 39 years says he is quitting.
Don Wistuba, a beloved fixture at the Capitol, says he can’t compete with the free food lobbyists provide for lawmakers during the sessions. He’s giving up his concession stand on Aug. 31.
Wistuba, who is blind, began operating a snack bar in a state office building in 1974. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports (http://bit.ly/1DDllqa ) he moved to the Statehouse in 1976.
He says when 90 percent of the people at the Capitol get free food, he can’t keep his business afloat. And he says there is no longer enough foot traffic in the building when the Legislature is not in session because many state offices have been moved out of the building

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