Oops. It turns out that the newfangled voter registration and identification system so lauded and pursued by Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach might not work as smoothly as we’ve all been told. It also turns out that one of those Kansans whose voter registration landed on the state’s “suspended” list is none other than the daughter of Kobach primary challenger Scott Morgan. Morgan’s 18-year-old daughter registered to vote online, submitting a digital copy of her U.S. passport as validation of her citizenship status. Nevertheless, the younger Morgan received a letter from the Douglas County Clerk’s Office explaining that her voter registration lacked the needed identification. Although the issue was quickly resolved, candidate Morgan raised a valid point about the potential for the voter registration requirements to interfere with the right to vote. “How it happened to my daughter and then was miraculously resolved … it just makes me wonder how many people out there whose father isn’t running for secretary of state against the incumbent are left in never-never land,” he said this week.
It’s one thing to require people to verify their eligibility to vote, but it’s another entirely to introduce a system that will disenfranchise voters and create significant barriers for those who take the time to register to vote. Additionally, if this new system suffers from confusion or delays from various computer systems – which is what prompted the letter to Morgan – there’s a legitimate concern that a good number of people who registered to vote will be denied the opportunity, or decide voting just isn’t worth the trouble.
In Reno County, 477 people remain on the suspended voter registration list, most of whom still need to produce the additional identification verifying residency. Statewide, more than 18,000 voter registrations have been suspended because they lack the information to meet the state’s voter ID laws.
Full Article: Voting error – The Hutchinson News: Editorials.