Critics of a Kansas law requiring new voters to provide proof of their U.S. citizenship when registering urged legislators Tuesday to repeal the policy during their special session, but such an effort immediately stalled. About 100 people gathered at the Statehouse for a rally sponsored by KanVote, a Wichita-based group that opposed the law, which took effect in January. The NAACP, the American Civil Liberties Union and Equality Kansas, the state’s leading gay-rights organization, also called publicly for the law’s repeal. The law took effect in January, backed by Secretary of State Kris Kobach and fellow Republicans, who view it as a way to prevent non-citizens from voting improperly. But more than 15,000 legal Kansas residents’ voter registrations are on hold because they have yet to provide proper documents, meaning they can’t legally vote.
…During a House debate Tuesday, Rep. Jim Ward, a Wichita Democrat, offered an amendment to “Hard 50” legislation to allow new voters to simply affirm that they are citizens, rather than requiring them to produce a birth certificate, passport or some other document. But the Republican-controlled House ruled it out of order.
The Rev. Ben Scott, the past president of the NAACP’s state chapter, called the law an example of “misplaced priorities” and recalled national struggles five decades ago to ensure minorities could exercise their right vote in the South.
“I can tell you we won’t give up,” Scott said during the rally. “We’ve come too far.”
Full Article: Push to end Kan. proof-of-citizenship rule falters – SFGate.