A move by a Kansas House Republican would keep GOP Secretary of State Kris Kobach from using state money to pay for being found in contempt of court. Kobach, who is running for governor, was found in contempt of court by a federal judge earlier this month. The legislation was offered by Rep. Russ Jennings, R-Lakin. He said the move would prohibit using any state money for defense or penalties involved in a finding of a contempt of court by statewide elected officials. That would include the governor and the secretary of state. “You pay your own bills if you get yourself in that kind of trouble,” Jennings said. The change passed, 103-16. The overall budget bill that includes the prohibition is still a ways from making it to Gov. Jeff Colyer’s desk.
… The judge ordered Kobach to pay attorney fees for the plaintiffs in the case. He could face additional fines after the judge makes her final ruling in the overall case. Kobach’s office said last week that it plans to appeal.
Kobach was on Jennings’ mind when it came to this change.
“I’m sick of reading about our state level, statewide elected official being in court for contempt,” Jennings said. “…We’re not paying the bill for him.”