Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach just got schooled, in a literal sense, by the federal judge who struck down the unconstitutional state law he’s loved and now, as even he expected, has lost.
Judge Julie Robinson ruled that the 2011 law, which was both written by and defended in court by Kobach, a Republican candidate for governor, “disproportionately impacts duly qualified registration applicants, while only nominally preventing non-citizen voter registration.”
Since the law requiring Kansans registering to vote to show proof of citizenship went into effect in 2013, it’s disenfranchised some 35,000 legitimate voters and uncovered just a few cases of potential voter fraud.
Even as the country’s one secretary of state with the ability to prosecute such cases, Kobach located only 43 non-citizens out of 1.8 million Kansas voters who had registered to vote in the state since 1999. Just 11 of those actually cast a ballot, and Robinson found those were “largely explained by administrative error, confusion, or mistake.” …
President Donald Trump’s former voter-fraud adviser never should have tried to represent his own baby in court. He seemed like an amateur and was repeatedly called out for such stunts as trying to introduce evidence Robinson had already ruled inadmissible.
… Now, Robinson has sentenced the secretary of state to a kind of legal summer school in the form of a six-hour, continuing ed course on federal or Kansas civil rules of procedure or evidence.
The Harvard, Oxford and Yale Law grad surely knows better but loves to come off as an anti-elitist cowboy as he wastes his state’s time and money chasing non-existent bad guys.
As unsurprising as the ruling itself was the announcement that Kobach will appeal the case, which was filed by the American Civil Liberties Union in 2016. …
"In his zeal to make citizen participation in elections in Kansas as hard as possible,” said Micah Kubic, executive director of the ACLU of Kansas, “Secretary Kobach has chosen to put that ideological obsession over common sense and indeed above the rule of law.”
Unbridled zeal is what he’s running on. And if ideological obsession is what Kansas Republicans want, Gov. Jeff Colyer and Kobach’s other GOP rivals don’t stand a chance in their party’s August primary.
— The Kansas City Star