Kris Kobach recently and clumsily unveiled a new way to complete one’s voter registration in Kansas: Sue the secretary of state. In another questionable move when it comes to voters’ rights, Kobach’s office stepped in to register two Douglas County men who had filed legal action against him earlier this year. The two citizens have challenged the legality of Kobach’s bid to purge them and others from Kansas’ suspended voters list, which once included 36,000 names. Don’t misconstrue Kobach’s actions as a conciliatory move. They are clearly intended to head off a judge’s ruling that could topple one of the secretary of state’s signature efforts to make voting more difficult in Kansas.
Kobach has filed a motion asking a federal court to dismiss the lawsuit brought by the two men whom he just registered, arguing that they have no legal standing anymore because they “suffer no current injury.” How convenient.
Will Lawrence, an attorney for the men, aptly summed things up this way: “Obviously we are happy that our two clients are registered to vote, but it’s more than these two individuals who are being affected. If Kobach can just go in and get this done, why not do this for everyone?”
Good question. If the Republican secretary of state is so intent on making sure people eligible to vote can do so, why can’t his office work a little harder to get as many people as possible off the suspended voters list?