Archive for Friday, August 1, 2014

Church leaders question Kobach comment on voter ID

August 1, 2014, 9:04 a.m. Updated August 1, 2014, 9:38 a.m.


— Some Kansas church leaders are speaking out against Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach for a statement he made this week during a radio interview suggesting no legitimate churches are opposed to the state’s voter photo identification law.

The Kansas Legislature passed a law in 2012, at Kobach’s urging, requiring voters in the state to provide a photo ID at the polls, The Wichita Eagle reported. Critics said the measure disenfranchises the elderly, minorities and the poor, who may have a hard time getting a photo ID.

When asked during an interview on WIBW radio Monday whether he had considered easing up on the ID law after it came under fire from some churches, Kobach responded that he doesn’t know of any church that opposes voter ID.

“I don’t know which churches — and I’d put ‘churches’ in quotation marks — because the vast majority of church leaders I’ve spoken to are fully in favor of our voter ID law,” he said.

Leaders of black churches in Wichita fired back that Kobach obviously hasn’t met with any of their congregations.

“He’s wrong to say that,” said Carieta Cain Grizzel, pastor at Grant Chapel African-American Episcopal Church in Wichita. “He doesn’t know what he’s talking about.”

At a news conference in June, Grizzel described Kansas voter laws as “Jim Crow-ism.” On Thursday, she said she was speaking for herself, her church and the African Methodist Episcopal denomination as a whole when she made that statement.

“We object to the voter ID laws in all of the states,” she said.

Kobach told The Eagle on Thursday his comment was referring to individual pastors speaking for themselves and not their churches.

“If one individual who may incidentally be a pastor of a church disagrees with me,” Kobach said, “I don’t think that means the, quote, church disagrees with me.

“One individual does not make a church. Individuals have their opinions, but I don’t know of any church that opposes voter ID.”

Wade Moore, pastor at Wichita’s Christian Faith Centre, said Kobach “definitely hasn’t talked to any African-American churches.”

Kobach’s comments come at the heels of complaints by the Greater Wichita Ministerial League that Assistant Secretary of State Eric Rucker was rude and disrespectful at a July 10 meeting, a claim that Rucker denied.

“We tried to get Kobach’s assistant to explain the voter ID to the church,” said Moore, who is president of the Ministerial League, “but we couldn’t get anywhere with it.”


Larry Sturm 3 years, 4 months ago

I don't think he talked to any churches except the church of the Koch brothers.

Larry Sturm 3 years, 4 months ago


Fred Whitehead Jr. 3 years, 4 months ago

What in the devil (oops, sorry!) is a "legitimate church"???

There are the mainstream denominations, Baptist, Episcopalian, Lutheran, Methodist, etc. And there are the splinter group "churches" that meet in old houses and under trees. So just what makes any church" legitimate". All religion is the work of someone who thinks his view of the nature of creation is the "only" one. They think everyone else should think as they do and that the government ought to enforce their religion on all the rest of us. Those people are to be viewed with some concern and restraint.

But when you are a "church", you have rights way beyond the rights of normal people, you can discriminate, control people's access to legitimate legal medical procedures, and avoid paying taxes. They have the government by the throat, most governments are scared stupid of anyone who claims to have some "religious" view" I am surprised that there are not more "legitimate churches".

3 years, 4 months ago

You can find all the paper work for that on the internet I'm certain.

James Howlette 3 years, 4 months ago

Yes, but Kobach would question whether or not you spoke for the church if you opposed his voter ID laws. He'd take your word for it if you agreed, though.

Scott Burkhart 3 years, 4 months ago

What about the rights of abnormal people? If there are normal people, there must be abnormal people, right?

Mike Ford 3 years, 4 months ago

change the subject when it's bad right?

James Howlette 3 years, 4 months ago

Abnormal people like churches, corporations, and lobby groups? Don't you worry about them. They've got more rights than we do.

Bob Forer 3 years, 4 months ago

What in the devil (oops, sorry!) is a "legitimate church"???

Good question, Fred. Myself, i really haven't a clue, but I am guessing since Kobach and Todd Akin are philosophical bed partners, that it is the same kind of "legitimate" contemplated in "legitimate rape."

Ray Miller 3 years, 4 months ago

So is a "legitimate church" similar to "legitimate rape?" The GOP uses that word so often...

3 years, 4 months ago

Could you imagine kobach holding office in a legitimate government?? So there you go then...

Brock Masters 3 years, 4 months ago

Did Kobach actually use the term legitimate or is that the reporters interpretation of what he said? I don't see anywhere where Kobach is to have legitimate churches?

Fred Whitehead Jr. 3 years, 4 months ago

Wow!! What I started!!! Meaning n of the word "legitimate". Sure beats me, I cannot find my paperback Webster's, I know it is here somewhere. Lemme see..........

Richard Aronoff 3 years, 4 months ago

When I relocated from New York to Lawrence, I had to produce a birth certificate or a passport to obtain a KS driver's license, despite the fact that I had a current NYS license with a photo.

Canada has a voter ID law. Of course, that's because they have no poor, elderly or minorities up there.

James Howlette 3 years, 4 months ago

Canada's voter ID law is more liberal and allows for a wider variety of documents that can be used for identification. That failing, the voter can have someone with ID vouch for them. In fact, most countries that have some sort of voter ID system have allowances for people that for whatever reason are going to have difficulty getting government issued ID.,

But hey, if we're going to be just like Canada, can we have their health care system, too? What about their gun control laws? Perhaps just their year of paid maternity/paternity leave.

Mike Ford 3 years, 4 months ago

Except the First Nations Peoples and Metis that they didn't allow to vote for some time in the 20th century.

Steve King 3 years, 4 months ago

If Sam and Chris get relected I'm moving out of this crazy state.

Brock Masters 3 years, 4 months ago

Several of the comments were about legitimate churches but it seems Kobach didn't say that, the reporter did.

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