To the editor:
We should consider ourselves lucky that Gov. Brownback didn’t cause Secretary of State Kobach to do as Florida Gov. Rick Scott is doing. Scott recently directed election officials to purge their rolls of suspected fraudulent voters. They sent letters (list provided by Scott’s office) telling recipients they weren’t U.S. citizens and giving them 30 days to provide proof of citizenship. If they didn’t respond, they would be summarily removed from the rolls. Oddly enough, Scott’s list consisted primarily of voters either with a history of voting Democratic or Independent or having a last name ending in a vowel or sounding Hispanic, or both. Remember, Florida was the state of questionable election practices during the 2000 election.
With a history of voter suppression, Florida is covered by the 1965 Voting Rights Act. They violated the act by not getting approval for either the purge or the methods. Many county election officials in Florida are not purging their lists saying the purge is faulty if not illegal. The U.S. Department of Justice told Florida to cease and desist, but as of the writing of this letter Florida has essentially told the DOJ to stuff it. As a note, over 400 responded to date proving citizenship. Among them are two World War veterans.
Yes, Kansas, we should consider ourselves fortunate that our voter suppression is geared only towards voters registering here for the first time. I just hope the state doesn’t adopt any crazy ideas. However, we have borrowed failed ideas, policies and people from Florida during the past two years, haven’t we?