voting

Keith Ivey / Flickr

Residents of Kansas, Georgia and Alabama will have to prove they are U.S. citizens when registering to vote for federal elections using a national form, a judge ruled Wednesday.

U.S. District Judge Richard Leon sided against a coalition of voting rights groups that sued a U.S. elections official who changed the proof-of-citizenship requirements on the federal registration form at the request of the three states and without public notice. Residents of other states only need to swear that they are citizens, not show proof.

Becky McCray / flickr Creative Commons

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach is planning to use provisional ballots during the upcoming elections and then throw out all of the votes for state and local races cast by the thousands of voters who register to vote at motor vehicle offices without providing proof of citizenship.

An email sent from Kobach's office to county election officials outlines the state's proposed plans for implementing a two-tiered election system in the wake of a federal court order requiring Kansas to allow these voters to cast ballots at least in the federal races.

Stephen Koranda / KPR/File photo

Thousands of people in Kansas have incomplete voter registrations, which means they haven’t been able to vote. They were caught up in the state’s requirement that some people provide citizenship documents when registering. Now, a federal appeals court says many of those people should be allowed to vote in federal elections.

Nadya Faulx / KMUW

Election officials in Kansas are starting the process of registering thousands of suspended voters after a federal court ruled the state is violating the National Voter Registration Act. Approximately 18,000 people have been unable to vote in local or national elections because they failed to provide proof of citizenship while registering at a DMV.

Bloomsberries, flickr Creative Commons

A U.S. appeals court has ruled that thousands of suspended voters in Kansas who used motor vehicles offices to register to vote must be allowed to cast a ballot in federal elections.

Carla Eckels / KMUW

A local group is helping to register people to vote during Riverfest in downtown Wichita--including those who at one time were incarcerated.

Men and women released from jail who are U.S. citizens and "off paper"--meaning off probation and parole--can vote in Kansas. But many don't know they can.

Doug Ballard is part of the social justice group JENI, which stands for Jobs & Education--Not Incarceration. He says the group has been registering people to vote, including one formally incarcerated man who had not voted in more than three decades.

Hillary / flickr Creative Commons

A deadline is looming for Kansas voters who want to change political parties in time for the August primary election.

State law says voters can’t switch party affiliation for the primary after June 1. This is only the second election affected by the new party registration deadline.

Douglas County Clerk Jamie Shew says some voters were caught unaware two years ago.

“We had a number of people -especially in July because of the old registration deadline which happens in July- who were used to redeclaring a party and they couldn’t,” Shew says.

Carla Eckels

A lawsuit over voter registration in Kansas will likely continue, but some state election officials are getting prepared in case they need to make policy changes.

http://credoaction.com

An advocacy group is sending a letter to the U.S. Elections Assistance Inspector General to ask her to look into actions by the EAC's new executive director.

More than 116,000 people have signed an online petition urging the inspector general to investigate what it calls voter suppression at a federal government agency entrusted with making voting more accessible.

The progressive advocacy group CREDO Action said it planned to deliver petition signatures Wednesday to the U.S. Election Assistance Commission's Inspector General Patricia Layfield.

A Kansas county elections official used close ties to one of the nation's leading advocates of voting restrictions to help secure the top job at a government agency entrusted with making voting more accessible, and then used the federal position to implement an obstacle to voter registration in three states.

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