Tea Party-Backed Study Finds Kansas Voter Suspension List Riddled With Errors

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach (R) CREDIT: AP PHOTO/JOHN MILBURN
Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach (R) CREDIT: AP PHOTO/JOHN MILBURN

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach (R) has made it his mission to purge his state’s voter rolls and make it harder to vote, boasting that his suppression efforts have “stopped numerous aliens from registering to vote.” But a new report finds that his list of suspended Kansas voter registration contains more voters who meet the voting requirements than not.

In a 2014 re-election ad, Kobach noted that he believes “it should be easy to vote, but hard to cheat.” Ostensibly to eliminate the alleged problem of voter fraud, Kobach has placed about 25,000 Kansans on a suspended voter list, claiming they have failed to demonstrate their eligibility to vote.

But according to the Topeka Capital-Journal, a study by True the Vote (a Tea Party group that works to challenge voters they deem potentially fraudulent), found that 59 percent of those suspended voters have no factors preventing their eligibility, compared to just 41 percent whose eligibility could not be verified.

State Rep. John Carmichael (D), told the paper, that regardless of how many non-citizens were on the rolls, “it makes absolutely no sense to deny 22,500 Kansans — who have registered to vote and are lawful citizens entitled to vote — the right to vote.” Kobach has defended the list and is currently seeking new powers to prosecute voter fraud without the consent of local district attorneys.

Kobach’s efforts have not been limited to Kansas. He has also worked tirelessly to get other states to join his error-riddled Interstate Voter Crosscheck Program, a system which purports to flag voters who are registered in multiple states, but has often incorrectly flagged legitimate voters.