Three Democratic U.S. congressmen on Wednesday asked a federal agency to provide information regarding whether a top federal elections official had the right to unilaterally change voter registration forms in three states to require proof of citizenship. Reps. Elijah Cummings, Robert Brady and James E. Clyburn asked the chairman of the Election Assistance Commission for records connected to EAC executive director Brian Newby’s amendment in February of forms in Kansas, Alabama and Georgia. The group is seeking documents relating to requests from the three states to modify voter registration forms; all analysis of the impact of modifying federal voter registration forms; and all documents giving Newby the authority to unilaterally make the changes. Voting rights activists criticized the changes Newby made in February as a “secretive move” that created additional barriers for potential voters.
… Newby, who initially was appointed by Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach as Johnson County elections commissioner, used his close ties to Kobach to help him land the federal position in November. Kobach is a leading advocate of restrictions on voting such as voter ID laws and proof of citizenship.
A Shawnee County, Kansas, District Court judge ruled in January that Kobach had no authority to bar voters who registered using a federal form from casting ballots in local and state elections. Two weeks later Newby changed registration forms in Kansas, Georgia and Alabama without public comment or approval of the EAC.
Full Article: Congressmen question voter registration actions by official.