Candidates wouldn’t have to die — but they would have to suffer medical hardship or live outside Kansas — in order to be removed from the ballot after winning a primary race under a bill approved Wednesday by the Kansas Senate. House Bill 2104 was drafted by Secretary of State Kris Kobach in response to Democrat Chad Taylor’s withdrawal from the race for U.S. Senate last fall. It originally would have allowed candidates off the ballot only if they died. Democrats pointed out this would mean a candidate who fell into a coma would be forced to remain on the ballot.
The bill was amended to allow candidates to be taken off the ballot if they or their family members suffer “severe medical hardship.” It also allows a name to be taken off if the candidate certifies that he or she lives outside the state of Kansas.
The Senate passed the bill 28-12.