Stop voting (fraud?)

The Secretary of State in Kansas is responsible for administering elections and registering voters. In 2015, our State Legislature also gave the office the right to prosecute voter fraud, much to the delight of the current Secretary, Kris Kobach.

He has declared that he will present “a few” cases for prosecution before their statute of limitations runs out in November. We are eager to see justice brought to these malingerers.

But if, as history suggests, most cases of voter “fraud” are concerned seniors just trying to vote despite ID laws that prevent them, or divorced women voting under their maiden names, or college students unsure of whether to vote at home or at college, then we expect the Secretary of State to perform his primary job, educating the public on voting procedures and clearing away obstacles that might impede a citizen from performing their duty and securing their right.

We’ll see.

In the meantime, Mr. Kobach has opened up a new front on the right to vote, suggesting that the 30,000 voters his citizenship requirement has snagged be “purged” from the queue. No matter that the Federal courts have decided this is not required for Federal elections, causing Kobach to envision a two-ballot system where the “citizens” get to vote on all the people who represent them, and the “might not be citizens, gosh, who knows” only get to vote for Federal offices.

Kobach is proposing shredding the 30,000 voter registrations because they don’t meet his criteria. As their forms stand, even under a hypothetical two-ballot system, they could, and we would argue, should, be able to vote for President next year.

We would submit, respectfully, that Mr. Kobach should allow those 30,000 voters who have not proven their “Kansas citizenship” to be enrolled in his two-ballot system. Or if that is too much paperwork or expense, perhaps eliminate the citizenship requirement and use his new prosecutorial powers to punish those sneaky illegal immigrants who would dare darken the voting booth.

Which brings us to the voting booth. Why would our Secretary of State refuse to release voting machine records from the last election? A mathematician and professor from Wichita has requested, through the proper channels, to see that data, to explain a statistical problem she has noticed with Kansas voting. Kobach has argued that votes are private, but surely there is no private data involved? No names are recorded with our votes, are they? No mailing addresses. No phone numbers. Aren’t the results of an election public knowledge? Shouldn’t every citizen have the right to know that our elections are without error? Do we recall the media scrutiny over the hanging chads in 2000?

So, to Mr. Kobach, we ask that he enroll those 30,000 voters, that he release the voting machine records, and that he perform his job: making voting easier and more accessible to all voters.

To you, we humbly submit that should you experience any voting irregularities (say the denial of registration to 30,000 Kansans) you do your duty and report this voter fraud to our Secretary of State.

Thank you for doing your duty, and protecting your right. Vote.

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