Kansas: New voting laws adding to confusion, Douglas County election official says | Lawrence Journal World

Douglas County’s chief election official, County Clerk Jamie Shew, says he wishes legislators who keep passing new voting laws would be around to deal with angry voters who are tripped up by the changes. “We’ll get yelled at,” over the newest proposal, Shew predicted. The bill says no one who is registered as a Republican, Democrat or Libertarian will be able to switch party affiliation between June 1, which is the deadline for candidates to file for office for the Aug. 5 Republican and Democratic primaries, and the end of August. Current law says voters registered with a party can switch to another party up until two weeks before the primary. Republicans, who are the majority party in Kansas, see this proposed restriction as a way to stop Democrats from switching parties to influence GOP primaries, whether to try to set up the weakest Republican candidate for the general election or to elect the Republican candidate most aligned with their interests when there is little or no Democratic opposition in the November general election.

Editorials: What’s the rush? One major election change is enough for Kansas counties to handle this year | LJWorld.com

If there was reason to believe that Kansas has a serious problem with noncitizens voting in its elections, it might make sense to rush into a voter registration system designed to stem such abuse.

However, because there is little evidence that such a problem exists, it only makes sense for the state to take a little time to implement the requirement that Kansas residents show proof of citizenship when they register to vote.

The county clerks who actually have to run the elections are saying they have enough changes to deal with in the coming year without adding the proof-of-citizenship requirement. Secretary of State Kris Kobach should respect their opinion.

Kansas: Election officials want Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach to wait on citizenship requirement | LJWorld.com

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach’s proposal to move up the date when Kansans must show proof of citizenship to register to vote is not getting good reviews from the people who run elections.

“If you rush implementation of a policy, you have a stronger chance of mistakes,” said Douglas County Clerk Jamie Shew. He said voting is a constitutional right, “so you don’t want to make a decision on the fly about who gets to participate and who doesn’t get to participate.”