Advertisement

Archive for Friday, November 5, 2010

Secretary of State-elect Kris Kobach to jump on election fraud ‘mandate’

November 5, 2010

Advertisement

— Secretary of State-elect Kris Kobach said Thursday that he expects to take important steps toward combatting potential election fraud in Kansas within a week of assuming office and will move quickly because he has a mandate from voters.

Kobach, a Kansas City-area law professor and former Kansas Republican Party chairman, said during an Associated Press interview that he plans to have a bill for legislators drafted by Jan. 1 to require voters to show photo ID at the polls. It also will require people to provide proof of citizenship, such as a passport or birth certificate, when registering to vote for the first time in a given county.

He also said he expects to designate one or two employees of the secretary of state's office to investigate allegations of election fraud within a week of taking office Jan. 10. He said he'll create a new page and link for the office's website to give people a place to report election irregularities.

Kobach's relatively easy victory over Secretary of State Chris Biggs left the incumbent's fellow Democrats and even some Republicans wondering how Kobach will run the office. And Kobach's critics worry about the nationally known work he plans to carry on — in his spare time, he said — advising cities and states about cracking down on illegal immigration.

But Kobach said initiatives for combatting election fraud will be his focus, and he wants to give Kansas the strongest election security laws in the nation.

During the campaign, opponents often questioned his statements regarding some three dozen reports sent to the secretary of state's office. Kobach has said the reports of potential election irregularities in the past 12 years were signs of a bigger problem.

"Hopefully, it will be a model for other states, too, because voter fraud's not just a problem in Kansas," he said. "I view my election as a mandate on this issue."

Kobach, from the Kansas City-area community of Piper, received 59 percent of the vote in this week's election. Biggs, from Junction City, received 37 percent, with Libertarian and Reform Party candidates splitting the rest.

The incoming secretary of state is most-known nationally for having helped draft Arizona's new law on illegal immigration. He was working Thursday on legal briefs for an appeal of a federal court ruling against a Farmers Branch, Texas, immigration ordinance, taking a break for the AP interview at a burger place in the Legends shopping district in Kansas City, Kan., a few minutes from his home.

"There's some things, certainly, in his background that suggest there may be another agenda there," said Kansas House Minority Leader Paul Davis, a Lawrence Democrat. "I don't think anybody wants to see that office run in a very partisan way, whether you're a Republican or a Democrat. It's never been run that way."

Kobach said he plans to bring only a few of his supporters with him into the office, leaving most of its staff in place. A few employees may get some new duties when it begins investigating election fraud allegations, he said.

"I definitely will have a very full plate in securing Kansas elections," he said.

Kobach said his proposed legislation also will increase the penalties for some election crimes, such as double voting, and allow both state and local officials to prosecute cases. He said the photo ID provisions will be modeled on an Indiana law that has survived legal challenges in both state and federal courts.

Critics argue such proposals suppress voter turnout without doing much to combat fraud. Kobach strongly disagrees and believes legislators will pass his proposals, which also have the support of Gov.-elect Sam Brownback, another Republican.

"The implementation is going to be a long, drawn-out process because we've got 105 counties which are going to need to implement this thing consistently and well," Kobach said. "Even if this thing moved like a rocket through the Legislature, we're still talking about a minimum two-year process."

Meanwhile, skeptics will be watching how Kobach spends his time. Kobach has promised repeatedly that he'll do immigration work on his spare time. He said Thursday that he'll also help Kansas legislators who want to draft immigration legislation — if they seek his advice.

"I'm not going to be driving it," he said. "I'm not going to be the initiator or, you know, the catalyst for this stuff."

Comments

KEITHMILES05 4 years, 1 month ago

Voter fraud? Good grief! What a stuipid thing to say.

High comedy if you ask me!

Corpusrex 4 years, 1 month ago

If voter fraud is such a problem in Kansas, shouldn't his first act be to examine whether his own election to the office of Secretary of State was fraudulent or not?

overthemoon 4 years, 1 month ago

And he can conveniently overlook any allegations of voter suppression or monkey business by his pals.

denak 4 years, 1 month ago

Shouldn't he actually get a jump on the actual duties of Secretary of State as oppose to his little pet projects that have nothing to do with his office???

Just thinking.

Dena

Randy Leonard 4 years, 1 month ago

Talk about government activism. At least the Democrats and moderate Republicans want to solve use government to solve real problems. This idiot makes up his own.

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

Hadn't thought of that, very good point. No last minute registration for you naturalized citizens!

boltzmann 4 years, 1 month ago

I imagine that they could probably use their naturalization certificates.

Fixed_Asset 4 years, 1 month ago

Good point. What about the elderly who do not drive anymore, live on a fixed income and can't afford the cost of a Kansas ID???? Will the state be paying the costs of this mandate?

George_Braziller 4 years, 1 month ago

In Kansas it's a Catch 22 to get a copy of your birth certificate if you don't have a current photo ID because you have to have the copy of the birth certificate to get the ID.

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

But your parent can get a copy by showing their id. Even if you are 50 years old. Had a friend had to have him mom go to Topeka and get his birth certificate so he could replace his drivers license and he was 35 years old.

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

But your parent can get a copy by showing their id. Even if you are 50 years old. Had a friend had to have him mom go to Topeka and get his birth certificate so he could replace his drivers license and he was 35 years old.

verity 4 years, 1 month ago

And if their parent is dead? Or can't get to Topeka?

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

Exactly my point. The fact that a parent of a legal adult can access their birth records easier than they themselves can is just one more impediment to meeting the standards of the people who are freaking out about a problem that does not exist!!!

George_Braziller 4 years, 1 month ago

Actually accessing birth records is a big problem in Kansas. I worked at a local social service agency and the problem came up on a regular basis.

One guy had a traumatic head injury from a car wreck and couldn't access the services he needed until he had a birth certificate. His driver's licence had expired while he was in a coma and his wife couldn't even get a copy of his birth certificate because she didn't have a current photo ID for him.

I do some attendant work for a 72 year old woman who wanted to attend her grand daughter's wedding but had to have a current photo ID to get on the airplane. She has had two strokes and can't drive anymore so she let her driver's license expire. She didn't have a copy of her birth certificate to get a new ID and it took MONTHS to get it worked out.

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

It's ridiculous. But fixing a non problem is of greater concern then the rights of these people. God Bless the USA.

George_Braziller 4 years, 1 month ago

A registered voter who can't vote because she can't get a current photo ID isn't a problem? Are you serious?

funkdog1 4 years, 1 month ago

I think libra101 meant that Kobach is the one working on the non-problem when he could be addressing problems such as the one you brought up. But I could be wrong.

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

Thank you funk for clarifying my somewhat unclear point.

Richard Heckler 4 years, 1 month ago

There is no mandate for Kobach insanity.

Typically republican thinking as Kobach represents is looking for ways to recklessly spend OUR big government tax dollars. Republicans are not known for responsible fiscal management of our money.

Dwight Eisenhower was last Republican President to preside over a balanced budget. He had a balanced budget in 1956 and 1957. President Eisenhower also warned us about the military industrial complex that is now eating about 60% of every tax dollar.

Since then, there have been two presidents to preside over balanced budgets, LBJ in 1969 and Clinton in 1998 through 2001.

During the last 40 years there have been five budget surpluses, all five were under Democratic Presidents: 1969, 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2001.

Richard Heckler 4 years, 1 month ago

Under Eisenhower both houses of Congress were led by the Democrats.

grammaddy 4 years, 1 month ago

What mandate? Last time I heard this ":mandate" foolishness was when Bush won his re-election by a whopping 1%. I hope this is not indicative of the mess brought on by this election.

overthemoon 4 years, 1 month ago

No Tom. We don't expect you to understand much of anything.

grammaddy 4 years, 1 month ago

No, Tom, and I don't vote a straight Dem ticket either.But this guy has either become victim to his own fear-mongering, or has nothing better to do. Maybe he should move to Arizona. Oops, most of them don't want him there either.We Dems have our own conservatives too you know. Just like the Regurgicans have a few that are pretty far out there.Kobach is one of them.

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

Tom, go ask the "Anointed One" then get back with us on that.

raw 4 years, 1 month ago

Hopefully the courts will step in and shut down xenophobic laws.

bad_dog 4 years, 1 month ago

Funny comment given what's right below your post.

Now back to our regular programming...

commonsense 4 years, 1 month ago

The man wants to stop people voting who cannot show proper ID. I don't understand the problem. I have no problem showing my ID before walking into a voters booth. If I am a citizen, and lost my ID, I know that have several months to get one before entering the doors at my voting station. If you don't like Kobach', that's fine. But what he is doing in not injustice.

boltzmann 4 years, 1 month ago

what if you lose it the day before the election? Would you still have several months?

deec 4 years, 1 month ago

Or we could just take DNA samples from everyone at birth.

MyName 4 years, 1 month ago

It is useless and completely unnecessary. We've had elections for hundreds of years without needing this requirement and there has never been a case of the massive voter fraud that you would need to justify this in Kansas history.

And it is an injustice to people who don't have a driver's license and don't want to get a State ID card. There shouldn't be a anything out there that strips people of the right to vote merely because they don't want, or can't afford, to fork over a fee to a government agency.

geekyhost 4 years, 1 month ago

Vote suppression is far more common and effective than vote fraud. By making it more difficult to vote, he is, in fact, suppressing the vote. The ID requested is not something citizens are required to produce for employment or other legal activities, and they are not free - passports and copies of birth certificates cost money. That creates a poll tax and an extra effort for participation in our democracy. The net result is fewer eligible voters at the polls, not fewer fraudulent votes.

bd 4 years, 1 month ago

Wow, what a bunch of sore losers! Get over it!

I am not afraid to show my ID, I do it when asked for purchasing alcohol and cigs, when I get stopped for having a tailight out, when I cash a check. What is the big deal???

I am not hiding anything, are you???

Tea anyone????

geekyhost 4 years, 1 month ago

Hmm, I guess this army of undocumented voters is pretty stupid. Otherwise, they'd have just reelected Biggs.

geekyhost 4 years, 1 month ago

That sounds like a lot of manpower and per person outlay. Isn't it cheaper to just create corporate-funded organizations with vague names like, "Americans for Prosperity" to show all the stupid people how to vote?

tomatogrower 4 years, 1 month ago

No lie. Then they wrap themselves up in a flag and try and call themselves patriotic. They only care about making more and more money. They could care less if our country is sound.

tomatogrower 4 years, 1 month ago

Good point, vertigo. They want less government, but how many extra employees will he need to implement this expansion of government. Sounds pretty hypocritical to me.

Ralph Reed 4 years, 1 month ago

@Tom: re your 0717

That's the same thing as saying you (Tom) only like elections when a Rep wins. That's what you've been saying for two years. Give it a break. It's people like you on both sides of the coin that polarize our country leading to nothing being done. You don't talk with anyone to the left of O'Reilly and those on the other side don't talk with anyone to the right of Franken (to mention two of your favorite people).

I'm obviously not happy that BB won the governor race, but that's the way things are. What bothers me is that many of the right-wing fanatic groups will assume he'll brown stamp everything they want. That in itself is scary. He's also been very superficial in what his plans for Kansas and Kansans are (that includes you too, Tom).

I see Kobach as Phil Kline in different clothing. I still say he's a solution in search of a problem. He's wanting proof of citizenship when someone registers to vote, that's reasonable. However, take a look at what Jesse said at 0655 and read it carefully (it doesn't have big words, so you should understand it). A passport costs over $100. Will the state pay for that if it's a requirement in order to vote? Will the state pay for an "official" state ID card or US ID card? If the state won't and shifts that cost to the individual, that that cost is a poll tax which is prohibited under that 24th Amendment to the US Constitution. Will there be reciprocity with other states? (Reciprocity is a big word Tom, look it up.)

What happens if someone moves from Douglas to Leavenworth County? They were registered in Douglas, are they going to have to provide proof of citizenship if registering in Leavenworth ("...when registering to vote for the first time in a given county.")?

What was it the Gestapo always said? Wasn't it, "Ihre Papiere Bitte. Danke."? (Got your brown shirt starched, Tom?)

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

Even the $20 to get a birth certificate, pardon me a "certificate of live birth," may be a stretch for some people. Not to mention you have to go to Topeka to pick it up or wait 6-8 weeks for it to arrive in the mail. Having registration close a month before election day is already an impediment to voting for some, and now they have to wait for the birth certificate to arrive from Topeka. A voter living in say Liberal or Dodge City is at a huge disadvantage to anyone in the northeastern part of the state. And since a "certificate of live birth" is not proof that Barack Obama is a citizen then how long before someone claims they aren't sufficient to prove citizenship anyway?

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Those are important questions to think about.

But I don't think it's unreasonable that we ensure that voters are citizens and, in fact, who they claim to be.

There must be some sort of constitutionally acceptable way to do that.

bd 4 years, 1 month ago

Man , this paranoia is almost funny! LOL!

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 1 month ago

Let the WitchHunt (TM) begin!!!

"He also said he expects to designate one or two employees of the secretary of state's office to investigate allegations of election fraud"

Which one will examine the entrails of chickens and sheep? Do they have the special training required?

bruno2 4 years, 1 month ago

Produce your birth certificate, now, on the street, or go to jail. Hmmm, that looks like a forgery, off to jail with you until you can prove you are who you say you are...

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Since the right to vote is a right guaranteed to American citizens, it seems reasonable to ensure those voting are in fact citizens.

And, since you're only supposed to vote once, and for yourself, it seems reasonable to ensure that's what's happening as well.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 1 month ago

At what cost?

There is no credible evidence of significant voter fraud, and no credible evidence that there even could be without easy detection. So is it really worth decreasing voter turnout, the only certain result of this, to eliminate a non-existent problem?

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Since we don't check much for voter fraud, I have no idea how large or small the problem is, in practice.

If the requirement is structured so that it's not unduly burdensome or expensive (which it would have to be to be constitutional), it shouldn't decrease voter turnout as a result.

verity 4 years, 1 month ago

Just one person not being able to vote because of what amounts to a poll tax is too many. Enough of the "very few." I repeat, one is too many.

I think we're in for quite a ride here---if it weren't so serious, it would be high comedy.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

It is a constitutional right of American citizens.

average 4 years, 1 month ago

Um, you do know that the Obama admin has been deporting people at a substantially higher rate than the Bush admin. Right?

http://www.themonitor.com/articles/obama-41524-immigration-administration.html

MyName 4 years, 1 month ago

Please. Stop with the unverified Electric Koolaid hooky. I mean honestly, can you explain how the border "magically" got weaker when we got a new President even though the policy on immigration didn't change one iota? This is the kind of talking points BS that makes people wonder how you walk down the street without tripping over your feet.

average 4 years, 1 month ago

I can't tell you how many people were absolutely 100% sure that was finally going to happen when George Bush was elected in 2000, bringing all three branches under GOP control.

Prepare to be disappointed again, my friend.

Randall Uhrich 4 years, 1 month ago

I've yet to see a SINGLE CASE of voter fraud documented in Kansas. This is about Latino voter suppression, pure and simple. Republicans are racist, and try to hide it behind created issues. They make me be ashamed to be a Kansan.

lgreen17 4 years, 1 month ago

This is only going to make the lines longer, and less people will wait to vote. I know, because I worked at my polling station the last two elections, and the lines were pretty long anyway. If the poll workers have to verify the ID, many people will just go on to work and forget about voting.

jayhawklawrence 4 years, 1 month ago

Kansas always manages to find someone to elect for amusement purposes only.

Does anyone remember Vern Miller?

If Christine O'Donnell wants to revive her political career she should move to Kansas.

hail2oldku 4 years, 1 month ago

I have no problem showing a picture ID when I check in to vote. The birth certificate or passport thing is going too far though. Why not just require the same picture ID to register since it is presumably something issued by the state or a government agency? Yes, I realize these items can be fake, but if you're going to go to that extent to commit voter fraud you are willing to create a fake passport or birth certificate too.

boltzmann 4 years, 1 month ago

A driver's license or state id is not proof of citizenship as they are available to permanent residents as well - and in some states to illegal residents.

The only real solution to this and the issues of immigration is the institution of a required national id card - many other countries have them and that is one of their main documents to prove work eligibility and voter status. There are civil liberties issues with this of course, but if one wants to get serious about this, I think it is really the only viable option.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 1 month ago

You mean ACORN, which has been cleared, in multiple investigations, of all the crap thrown at the wall by Fox News, et al.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 1 month ago

I sometimes forget you live in a not quite parallel universe.

uneekness 4 years, 1 month ago

ACORN has never been convicted of voter fraud, because they haven't perpetrated any. Their mission was voter registration and GOTV. When ACORN self-reported questionable voter registrations, as they were required to do by law, Rupugs and FOX did their usual dance, making sure to tell their slavishly ill-informed followers that this was vote fraud, and that lazy welfare cheats, anyone vaguely Hispanic-looking and other threatening people of color were stealing elections from the good white "normal" folks it order to whip up turnout. Now, top Repugs and FOX folks would always have a good laugh about this behind closed doors, about the hicks who couldn't tell the difference, and how stupid they are to fall for all their other ridiculous stuff (like how tax cuts for the uber-wealthy will somehow make life better for the rest of the country).

Unfortunately for the rest of us, you say that crap long and loud enough, you get a generation of idiots who really believe it. And suddenly Kobach is your Secretary of State and Palin is a Presidential contender.

geekyhost 4 years, 1 month ago

Supply a single incidence of ACORN committing vote fraud. Yes, we can all point to them turning it fake registration forms, which is actually proof that they weren't suppressing votes. You see, if you have a registration rally, you have to turn in all the registrations, even if you suspect they're invalid. Otherwise you're potentially preventing someone from voting when they'd registered.

So show me proof that of those invalid registrations, any actual fraudulent VOTING occurred.

geekyhost 4 years, 1 month ago

Why, how'd you ever guess? BTW, I had to Google the reference, because I lack an unhealthy fixation on the advocacy actions of renter's rights groups.

Centerville 4 years, 1 month ago

Birth certificate or passport to register. Photo ID to vote. Not onerous.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 1 month ago

Not onerous to whom? This will not eliminate voter fraud, because there is none to eliminate. But it will reduce voter participation, which is the real intent.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 1 month ago

Reduce it? It's already at zero. Is it really possible to have less than that? Please explain.

redmoonrising 4 years, 1 month ago

Voter mandate! Now that's a good one. I didn't realize we had such a big issue with voter fraud here in Kansas.

zzgoeb 4 years, 1 month ago

The only "election fraud" anyone has seen in the past are the 2000 Presidential election, and the 2004 federal elections in Ohio!!!! It is VERY obvious the Kobach's agenda is Kris Kobach for some higher office!!! Let's start the recall petition today!!!

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

If this type of regulation comes to be, then the tax payers of Kansas can watch as millions of their dollars are spent defending it in court, all to fix a problem that doesn't exist, and only to be thrown out on constitutional grounds. Fiscal conservatism my fanny. It's all about disenfranchising minorities and the poor, a problem that actually exists, but doesn't send shivers down the legs of the mostly white people of this state.

lawrencefan 4 years, 1 month ago

Let the Kobach Three Ring Circus, sponsored by frenzied paranoia, begin. Crack that whip and thrust that chair, Secretary-elect Kobach. Your packed tent of fearmongers will relish the show.

bruno2 4 years, 1 month ago

In the immortal words of Bugs Bunny, "What a maroon!"

bd 4 years, 1 month ago

Man , the LOSER crybabies are out in force!

bad_dog 4 years, 1 month ago

As they were in November 2008. Nothing new about that-same song different verse.

pace 4 years, 1 month ago

He should hire Phil Kline as a special investigator. Phil is able to focus on one topic to the exclusion of others. I bet the special laws won't result in government being an expensive intrusive series of acts but will actually reduce the size of government and let the people themselves work out the problems.

MyName 4 years, 1 month ago

Actually, "requiring proof of ID" isn't one of his duties. And it won't be unless the legislature decides to pass laws to expand those duties and those laws actually pass constitutional muster.

roscoepoet 4 years, 1 month ago

Perhaps he can have Lil' Popeye fight off the hordes of fraudulent voters:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/83731368@N00/5147283305/

Richard Payton 4 years, 1 month ago

Did anyone remember Al Gore crying voter fraud? Obama could or couldn't vote in Kansas based on the birth certificate birthers out there? Robo-calls should be investigated?

Richard Heckler 4 years, 1 month ago

"What happened to smaller governement anyway? Expanding regulation is not how you downsize boys."

It's all election campaign rhetoric. Certainly has not happened since 1980. We got more reckless spending and more big government.

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

The numbers mentioned in this article have nothing to do with this blatant attempt to deprive people of their constitutional rights I'm sure.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-creamer/latinos-prevent-republica_b_779355.html

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

Excuse me, just what is wrong with asking people to prove citizenship and residency when they register?? It deprives no one of anything.

Motor voter registration is a prescription for fraud. As a citizen, I too have rights and one of them is to not have my vote diminished by fraud. A balance is required and proof of citizenship and residency is very appropriate.

Why the screaming here in Lawrence?? How many of you vote here and at home (students)?

In addition to the above, we need a software system to cross check registration to limit it to one location and one state (relevant near state borders).

The constitution has no provision limiting a valid determination of who you are and where you live. We are not talking voter literacy test here! There is no move backwards just an attempt to preclude undesired consequences as a result of the massive liberation of our voter registration laws in the past two decades.

boltzmann 4 years, 1 month ago

The major question here is whether we are trying to fix a problem which does not exist to any statistically meaningful extent. I would say unless there is evidence that it is a problem, there is no need to introduce further barriers to voting to fix a problem that doesn't seem to really exist.

Do you have any evidence that your vote has been diminished by existing fraud?

Many people don't have copies of their birth certificate lying around and would have to pay to request one. That would have the effect of discouraging them from voting, which I don't think is good policy.

It would be different however, if we have some sort of mandatory tamper-proof national id - like many European countries do - then a mandatory id check would make sense because all citizens would have to have one. This would go a long way to solve both the immigration problem (because it could then be required for employment) and the currently insignificant voter fraud issue. There are civil liberty issues associated with it of course, but I think it is the only serious way to tackle the illegal immigration problem, which unlike voter fraud, is a real problem.

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

How do you get the evidence if you have no means to acquire it??

boltzmann 4 years, 1 month ago

The major question here is whether we are trying to fix a problem which does not exist to any statistically meaningful extent. I would say unless there is evidence that it is a problem, there is no need to introduce further barriers to voting to fix a problem that doesn't seem to really exist.

Do you have any evidence that your vote has been diminished by existing fraud?

Many people don't have copies of their birth certificate lying around and would have to pay to request one. That would have the effect of discouraging them from voting, which I don't think is good policy.

It would be different however, if we have some sort of mandatory tamper-proof national id - like many European countries do - then a mandatory id check would make sense because all citizens would have to have one. This would go a long way to solve both the immigration problem (because it could then be required for employment) and the currently insignificant voter fraud issue. There are civil liberty issues associated with it of course, but I think it is the only serious way to tackle the illegal immigration problem, which unlike voter fraud, is a real problem.

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

It's been awhile since I've had to re-register but aren't you essentially verifying under oath that you are who you say you are and that you are legal able to vote. How many illegals would actually risk a perjury charge so they could vote in Kansas, a state that would elect Hitler if he had an (R) next to his name. This whole charade actually cracks me up, all the paranoid right is guaranteeing is their own extinction. Old white people are dying at a pretty steady clip, while young brown people are coming of voting age at an even steadier clip. Enjoy your status as a regional southern party of old white people, aka the Confederacy! I for one will be cheering you on from the peanut gallery.

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

Many states require proof of citizenship when you first get a drivers license. My comment is no more demanding.

Why would an undocumented person not lie when they have already committed a crime to be here??

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

Oh, I don't know, because they want to stay here!!! And risking that so they can cast a wasted vote, would be a pretty dumb risk to take.

boltzmann 4 years, 1 month ago

No, many states require evidence of legal residency, that is different than citizenship.

average 4 years, 1 month ago

The catch-22 of obtaining identification in the US is interesting.

Hey, J-W journalists, there's a story idea for you. Start out with no current photo ID, birth certificate, or Social Security card. See how many steps it takes to get them. Can't get a driver's license without an existing photo ID or birth cert. Can't get a birth cert without either photo ID, social security, pay stub, or a bank statement. Can't get a bank account without a photo ID. Can't get a job without the Social Security card. Can't get the Social Security card without a photo ID and birth cert.

Believe it or not, it's one of the largest steps out of the cycle of homelessness and shadow-living.

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

Have any of you see Kobach's birth certificate?

The non-issue of voter fraud is trumpt up to make the knuckle-dragging "birthers" happy. How sad, but as long as he is too busy with his new job to spend time playing lawmaker in Arizona, I'll be happy.

Cait McKnelly 4 years, 1 month ago

I have to laugh. The Republican Right has created more nonexistant issues and laws about nonexistant issues then a bunch of kids at the annual Boys/Girls State camps. One wonders if they are actually on the payroll of comedians and humorous pundits to dream up material for them. 1. The ban on Partial Birth Abortion. - No such procedure exists and has never been done by any licensed physician in the United States. Yet several states and the Federal Government have passed legal bans on the (nonexistant) procedure. 2. The recent ban on the use of Sharia or International law in the Oklahoma justice system. - Not only may this law be unconstitutional, treading on Federal powers, but with the possible exception of one or two cases where both parties have requested that Sharia law be considered (and the consent of the judge) neither Sharia nor International law has ever been used as a basis for judgement in any Oklahoma courtroom. Muslims make up less than 1% of Oklahoma's entire population. 3. Voter fraud in Kansas. - I would sincerely love to have someone post links to me about any instance of convicted voter fraud in this state. Even if there is a case or two where someone listed a false address or some such, it hardly makes it a "problem" requiring a "mandate". The Republicans in this state remind me of a very old joke. A man continually snaps his fingers, annoying those around him. When asked why he does it he says, "I'm keeping the tigers away. The constant noise scares them off" When it's pointed out that tigers aren't native to this country and the only ones around are behind bars in zoos he says, "See? it works!"

BigPrune 4 years, 1 month ago

There are six Kansas counties that have more voters than the Census voting population.

If you have to show an i.d. to buy a pack of cigarettes or a beer, what is the big deal if you have to show an i.d. to vote?

average 4 years, 1 month ago

Got a citation for that? Maybe name the counties.

Oh, and since there are only two Dem-majority counties in the state, the majority of those counties (you were going to name them, right?) must be GOP-run ones.

AlexHamilton 4 years, 1 month ago

The counties are listed in this article, along with possible explanations:

http://kansas.watchdog.org/5515/six-kansas-counties-have-more-voters-than-census-voting-population/

Note that there are no accusations of fraud here, but the voter rolls need to be cleaned up - something else Secretary of State Kobach has promised to do.

The paranoia on the left about this whole issue is amazing. What do you guys have to hide, anyway?

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

I'll use simple words here. Buying a pack of cigarettes or case of beer= not constitutionally protected. US citizen casting a vote= constitutionally protected. Constitution= governing document of the USA. Therefore one is not= to other. Clear?

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

Where in the constitution does it say that oene can not be required to show proof of citizenship?? It requires it to vote. Seems logical it would not have a problem with an effort to make sure you are one?

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

Where in the constitution does it says one is required to present an expensive and difficult to obtain document in order to register? Nowhere, that's where.

How many people should we disenfranchise in order to appease the paranoia of some? What rights are you willing to give up in order to appease the fevered few?

Just because you can't imagine a situation where this may never apply to you, you shouldn't assume it never could.

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

I think the part about showing proof of citizenship in order to vote is written in the Constitution right next to the section that says you must also register your handguns.

There are just some things that seem to make perfect sense to some, to which others will take great umbrage.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

The better analogy would be requiring proof of citizenship in order to buy a handgun legally.

If the 2nd amendment is to apply to US citizens.

Voting is a right of an American citizen, and I see no real reason that we shouldn't make sure non-citizens aren't voting.

The 2nd amendment issue is interesting - the US immigration citizenship questionnaire states that the constitution applies to all living here, regardless of citizenship. At the same time, it is a federal felony for an undocumented alien to possess a firearm.

Sounds like a conflict and contradiction to me.

camper 4 years, 1 month ago

The penalty to vote fraudulently is severe. And to what benefit? I can't think how voter fraud can possibly be an issue. There was a small number of complaints over the last decade....seven, I think. Of these most were dismissed while none were proven or prosecuted. This does not seem like a big problem.

On the other hand, this robo call gimmick where a certain campaign office was urging voters to come out on Wednesday (ie the wrong day!) are the things that need to be monitored more closely. As well as vote counting, ballot box stuffing....things like this. This is where the danger is. This voter ID drive is a misdirection of energies. Misguided.

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

It's certainly guided. It's guided at reducing the number of people who might vote for democrats.

camper 4 years, 1 month ago

I thought it was either that or just inserting a contrived issue into the campaign to distract voters from more substantive issues.

libra101 4 years, 1 month ago

Fear monger to drive out your base, while simultaneously laying the groundwork to disenfranchise the opposition. The only way the modern Confederacy can win an election.

jasonthesane 4 years, 1 month ago

It seems to me that this is a case of the medicine being worse than the disease.

It would take a pretty large conspiracy of illegal voters to swing any major election with a significant voter pool. Pretty unlikely that such a scheme would go undetected... people do like to talk. If you're talking about smaller, local elections I believe the actual harm caused by non-citizen participation to be pretty minor. The voters involved would most likely be members of the community and have a legitimate interest.

Making the registration/voting process more difficult will almost certainly reduce voter turnout and diminish the effectiveness of the system.

The ID requirement also presents opportunities for other types of voter fraud. I lived for a time in a country which required voters to present their national ID card in order to vote. Prior to their presidential election, I learned of a common scheme to manipulate voter turnout. Officials of party/candidate "A" would visit regions known to favor party/candidate "B" and collect id cards from the residents. There would usually be some sort of official sounding reason for the collection... and also a "gift." The next best thing to knowing someone is voting for you is knowing that they won't vote against you.

Mark Pickerel 4 years, 1 month ago

Kobach is an embarrassment to Kansas.

A whole bunch of lawyers just got really excited. You know there are going to be legal challenges to whatever crap regs he tries to ram through, and that is going to cost the state millions of dollars.

Republicans like him scream about "big government", then clog the courts with stupid fear-mongering laws and drown us in legal fees.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 1 month ago

Yea, check out BigPrune's little fantasy down below.

Cait McKnelly 4 years, 1 month ago

Like this little exchange between TS and I on another thread? http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2010/nov/06/keith-olbermann-suspended-political-donations/#c1416647

TomShewmon (Tom Shewmon) replies… Rules are rules Jimo. I know the far-left has a real problem with that concept. We've seen it in abundance with the Democratic Party's propensity to break voting laws.

cait48 … "Rules are rules Jimo. I know the far-left has a real problem with that concept." As opposed to Fox which has none? I guess the Right has just as big of a problem with the concept as well, Tom. "We've seen it in abundance with the Democratic Party's propensity to break voting laws." I want proof and sources for this statement.

TomShewmon … I want you to disprove this widely known fact first.

cait48 (anonymous) replies… I'm not the one making the assertion. You are. Prove it or it's a lie.

woodscolt 4 years, 1 month ago

Kobach is a "fraud" so he thinks his best defense is going after fraud. Bet he doesn't investigate himself, which is a red flag on how genuine he is about his self manufactured "mandate"

BigPrune 4 years, 1 month ago

Let's say in Lawrence, there are 1200 people who die annually. Of those, 1000 are registered voters. Someone keeps track of the deaths and the addresses the deceased used to reside.

A group of fringe left-wing radicals decide they want to make a difference for their cause, so they show up to vote for these dead people. All they have to do is give a name of a dead person in that particular precinct. The poll person looks up their name, and the concerned left-wing radical goes in a places a vote for the dead person. Easy as pie.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 1 month ago

Oh, yea, that's a really likely scenario, because absolutely no one would ever notice, would they?

But thanks for a perfect demonstration of how hysterical these voter fraud conspiracy theories are.

woodscolt 4 years, 1 month ago

or move voting machines from working class precincts to wealthy white neighborhoods and create lines so long that people have to wait in line for hours to vote. And then when they can't wait any longer (you know, kids , dr appointments, work,to cold, etc) they go home without voting. Register voters and then throw out the ones they don't like so when they show up to vote, they aren't registered and get turned back. Oh, and then deny them provisional ballots. A really good one is sending notification to the home of people in the military and since they're deployed they don't respond and then their registration is revoked and their votes are disqualified . These are just a few of the tactics used by the republicans during the appointment of bush regime era (remember the guy republican judges appointed to the presidency? Oh yeah thats another too). Oh, and thats not all either.

If the pubs can do this then the dems might just as well fight fire with fire and do it to. NO wait, thats were herr kobach comes in. Wow , were sure lucky. I feel so safe now

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Right wing groups could do the same things.

pace 4 years, 1 month ago

I hope that dead that rise aren't right wing pursed lipped government men that are out to block people voting. That is the most likely fraud.Voter fraud is usually not the citizen on the street but the cigar chomping chicken in the house.

verity 4 years, 1 month ago

This may just be the red herring to hide the real reason Kobach was so eager to be Secretary of State---redistricting after the 2010 census. Remember the Texas debacle after the 2000 census? The Republicans have not made a secret of the fact that this is the way they intend to keep power permanently.

Mark my words, Kobach will try to gerrymander the Democrats out of any voting power in Kansas. It was tried in the last redistricting by dividing Lawrence and putting many former 3rd district Democrats into the 2nd district in order to defeat Dennis Moore. In that case, it may have backfired, because Moore continued to win and Jim Ryan lost his seat.

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

"He also said he expects to designate one or two employees of the secretary of state's office to investigate allegations of election fraud within a week of taking office Jan. 10."

How much will two people dedicated full time to election fraud cost? With salary of two state employees at about $45K each, plus benefits, that would end up being around $150K or more a year to chase a problem that doesn't appear to really exist. So much for the Republican move to cut spending.

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

Aha, the real reason for all this fuss is that there is a fear that requiring proof of citizenship for voting my discourage votes for Democrats. Why? Are such voters too stupid to obtain proper credentials – we all have a birth certificate. Most of us have drivers’ licenses? Could there be substance to Mr. Ks argument and you know there is fraud in the Democratic Party registration process?

Frankly I fail to see a connection. If people are too stupid to obtain proper credentials perhaps they should not be able to vote anyway. Do you assume that stupidity pertains more to Democratic Party voters than to conservative or moderate voters? Sound like a pretty sorry admission.

You would think we would all welcome an appropriate voter registration and validation process. Voting is one of our most cherished traditions and basic rights. It should be protected appropriately. To obtain a veterans tag for my car I have to show appropriate official documentation that I am a veteran. Why should voting have less protection??

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

Are voters too stupid? Given Tuesdays results ...

(okay, just kidding).

Having a special tag on your car isn't a right. Voting is, as has already been stated. Must I show identification in order to practice my rights? The concept of voters needing to show identification has a long, and ugly history, that harkens back to Jim Crow laws. It is intended to keep people from voting who are not part of the establishment.

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

Bea,

I know well about voter intimidation. I really do not see that here. The constitution requires that you be a citizen. To me it is logical for the voting authorities to verify that. IMHO there is no loss in rights in showing you meet the constitutional requirement.

I am still searching for the problem in verifying citizenship in order to vote? Because we had "Jim Crow" laws that were obviously an attempt to deny the vote to some does not make any requirement on voting automatically a like effort!

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Again, it's the right of American citizens.

I think this isn't and shouldn't become a partisan - left vs. right issue. Our elections should be free and fair, only voters who are in fact citizens should be allowed to vote, and all votes should be accurately counted.

What's the reasonable objection to that?

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

Well, I am not over there with Tom. I wonder what I am.

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

Just ask yourself, in the past, how many non-Republicans have you ever voted for? If it isn't at least 35 to 40%, then the chances are you aren't a moderate.

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

Oh by the way. I disagree with you that any of you have provided any rational counter to my argument that determining if you are a citizen in order to meet the constitutional requirement to vote is flawed.

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

Out of fear that someone might be breaking the law, you are willng to assert certain demands of law abiding citizens who wish to practice a constitutional right.

Sorry, but the Constitution doesn't place demands on citizens, like the need to show identification, in order to practice our rights. Asking those in positions of authority to ask citizens to "Show me your papers," is not part of the American way.

This is a rational counter George.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Well, I believe there are various laws requiring ID for folks to buy guns.

Should we do away with those?

The right to bear arms is a constitutional right, isn't it?

woodscolt 4 years, 1 month ago

the troll says"you know there is fraud in the Democratic Party registration process?" you don't know this but the fear mongers have convinced you. Falling into step nicely.

Scott Morgan 4 years, 1 month ago

I believe we all realize what large mistakes were made during the election process of President Obama. In this we can agree. Voting problems on both sides. The ACORN mess alone should be a warning to both sides of our precious democracy. I remember with sadness how we trashed overseas votes by our service people.

Right or left we should demand our elections are clean and only registered voter ballots count. I find nothing funny regarding Chicago style voting, or sick jokes of Southerners denying access to polls.

Whatever Lawrence means to Kansas, reality shows a long history of progressive ideals and thinking. Lawrence is home to KU and a growing transient population. Transient does not mean homeless, I see a bigger population of more and more part time residents living here with friends or relatives due in part to lax policing and generous welfare programs.

Two thousand, three thousand fraudulent votes can make a difference in Douglas County.

Who knows where we will be in 20 years? The city, and the county too is ripe for a major election fraud. Why not cinch up the process. I totally agree, you have to show I.D. to pay with a check, it's silly not to ask for I.D. when voting.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

I completely agree that fair and correct elections should not be a partisan issue, and that we should all support that idea.

The fact that it does become one is a sign to me of how absurdly partisan our political process and citizens have become.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Also, I seem to remember that those who certify other nations' elections as being free and fair would not have certified our own that way.

pace 4 years, 1 month ago

There is a great bridge for sale in New York.. Only the least informed believe hokum. right or left , We are ripe for fraud all right, if we choose silly gossip rather than information.

The CRS report couldn't find a single instance of an ineligible voter registered by ACORN actually attempting to vote.

If you can't dig any deeper or better you will be the one defrauded.

Cait McKnelly 4 years, 1 month ago

"I believe we all realize what large mistakes were made during the election process of President Obama"


There were also extremely large mistakes made during the election of process of George W. Bush; both elections. If you truly want to be bi-partisan, point the finger in both directions.

Scott Morgan 4 years, 1 month ago

Pace, Did you buy the bridge in New York. ACORN registered thousands of people illegally. ACORN got busted doing it.

pace 4 years, 1 month ago

he Congressional Research Service, former Massachusetts Attorney General, Brooklyn District Attorney General, and California Attorney General—in all there were at least 46 federal, state, and local investigations—cleared ACORN of wrongdoing,

I know you heard that Acorn was a corrupt organization, I know your really feel that way. enough said, You think something is true because you heard it, I can see why, you vaguely remember someone getting busted, some punks got arrested for pretending to be phone repair men or something at some federal office.. mmm. Being cleared doesn't mean that Acorn was perfect, doesn't mean Florida 2004 was just completely crooked. But jeez, if we can't tell vague memories of gossip or accusations from reality, we are ripe for being suckers. The biggest danger is not the thousands of dead voting in Douglas county and none of the poll watchers catching any of it. It is when the votes hit the bridge across the river to Topeka. The politicians are sometimes prone to drop boxes of votes in the river. Just for our sake.

Scott Morgan 4 years, 1 month ago

Bexar County, Texas, found hundreds of aliens registered to vote, some of whom had voted in a dozen local, state, and federal elections, and Harris County found a Norwegian citizen who had voted in a state legislative race decided by only 33 votes. Similar accounts from other states such as Utah and Arizona demonstrate that this is a widespread phenomena.

Just the tip of the iceberg.

Cait McKnelly 4 years, 1 month ago

"Bexar County, Texas, found hundreds of aliens registered to vote...." "Harris County found a Norwegian citizen..."


I Googled this and the only references I can find are to right wing publications using each other as sources. Indeed in the first four publications I found it, all four articles had been authored by the same man! I would truly love to see the official reports from Harris County (I'm assuming it's TX) and Bexar County regarding this. Your author, Hans A. Von Spakovsky (hoo boy! That name would have raised flags during the Cold War), has not sourced any of his claims in the article. The truth is that all of this came out of The Heritage Foundation (of which the author is a member), which , if possible, is more right wing than Fox News (there's that misnomer again) Corp. Keep drinking the KoolAid, wiss.

Cait McKnelly 4 years, 1 month ago

This is one case in Bexar County, the same county claimed in the article that had hundreds.Not only that, the woman was no "alien", legal or illegal. Don't you think that if this had happened it would have been all over the San Antonio newspapers? This is hardly an epidemic.

Kontum1972 4 years, 1 month ago

and how much are these ID's going to cost us....?

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

Jafs, regarding your question on guns and identification. Consider where I live, in Arizona. Are you required to have identification to carry? Not in Arizona. Conceal and carry? Not in Arizona. Vote? In Arizona, you bet! Still further, private parties are not required to ask for identification when selling guns in Arizona. It is illegal to carry if you are in the country illegally, just like voting.

It is far easier to get a gun and stick it in your pocket and walk around with it than to vote in Arizona. I know this is just one state, but gun enthusiasts are trying to get such laws throughout the country.

Scott Morgan 4 years, 1 month ago

cait48. No, I give up. You are correct. Anyvoter should be able to walk in anytown and vote without proving identity. How foolish to think organizations like ACORN should never be under scrutiny.

Mari Aubuchon 4 years, 1 month ago

Republicans forever seem to be worried that people who should not be able to will get to vote. Democrats always worry that those who should be able to will not get the chance to vote.

I tend to think that we should be more concerned with insecure voting machines and excessive corporate influence on elections, but that's just me I guess...

feeble 4 years, 1 month ago

Late to the fight, but... The SCOTUS ruling on Crawford v. Marion County suggests that a bill requiring ID will pass Constitutional muster, at least as far as the Courts are concerned.

Proof of citizenship is something else, as this was overturned in the Az law back in October, I'm sure Kobach is assuming he will win at SCOTUS on appeal.

The other thorny issue is that the law requiring proof of citizenship will need to be applied universally. Allowing absentee voters, or some other voter group such as the elderly, to by pass this rule will effectively create two classes of voters, which virtually garuntees such a law would be overturned on appeal.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.