A Kansas election official is trying to hide materials that undercut his public claim that substantial numbers of noncitizens have registered to vote and that documentary proof-of-citizenship requirements are necessary to stop it, civil rights advocates contend in a court filing. The American Civil Liberties Union obtained the materials as part of its federal civil lawsuit in Kansas challenging the state’s voter registration law that requires people to submit citizenship documents such as a birth certificate, naturalization papers or U.S. passport. It asked a federal judge in a filing late Tuesday to remove the confidential designation that Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach placed on materials he was photographed taking into a November meeting with then President-elect Donald Trump, as well as a separate draft amendment to the National Voter Registration Act.
The ACLU wrote that Kobach has “made statements to the public, the Court, and to high officials including the President, suggesting that noncitizen registration fraud is a serious, widespread problem while simultaneously endeavoring to conceal documents that tell a different story and to avoid answering questions about those documents. Sunlight is the best disinfectant under the circumstances.”
… Dale Ho, director of the ACLU’s voting rights project, said Wednesday that his group’s goal is to protect voting rights. In order for Kobach to impose proof-of-citizenship documentation requirements, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that he would have to show that substantial numbers of noncitizens are registered to vote and that requirements for citizenship documents are necessary to stop them.
“If he is trying to change the law, that is in some sense a concession that he can’t prove there is such a problem,” Ho said.