On Nov. 6, we can make changes to diminish the current problems in our government: the influence of money in politics, the lack of accountability by elected officials, the desires of ordinary citizen being overruled by the wishes of political bosses, and financial policies that simply benefit those of us with the most money.
As Secretary of State, Kris Kobach abandoned 150 years of ethical precedent. While holding the lead responsibility to ensure fair elections he not only declared which candidates the voters of this state should vote for, but also raised money to pay for ads to defeat legislators that did not vote for legislation in the manner that he wanted them to.
In U.S. District court, Kobach stated 43 noncitizens registered to vote and 11 of them voted since 2000. Between 2013 and 2016 more than 35,000 Kansas residents were unable to register to vote. Pursing laws that result in over 3,000 residents not voting for each illegal vote is a failure. Kobach’s plan to use driver’s license renewals for registration failed. His plan to verify citizenship for registration through the Office of Vital Statistics failed. His department’s online notification of registration status failed. His vision of a seamless system failed.
In 2016, Kobach proposed legislation to make local elections partisan, require straight-ticket ballots and move local elections to the fall. The fall election date became law. The generation of our grandparents did away with these types of rules because they help a political machine work against electing individuals that could do the best job in local offices if they did not comply with the larger agenda of political bosses. Kobach has served as a state political party head. 194 local school boards passed resolutions opposing this proposal.
Kobach promises to revive the Brownback income tax cut fiasco, cut services and work to end the constitutional requirement put in place by our grandparent’s generation that has ensured an equal education for all students. Students in the wealthiest districts would maintain funds and students everywhere else would lose out.
Kobach works to escalate the central problems in our current government. And his claim that he carries the mantle of our state’s conservative heritage is false. This was evident in his miniscule victory margin of one-tenth of one percent in the primary election where 60 percent voted for other candidates.
True examples of our conservative heritage are former Gov. Bill Graves and former U.S. Sen. Nancy Kassebaum, both Republicans, who we elected with 74 percent majorities. They have endorsed state Sen. Laura Kelly for governor.
Please continue our heritage of government that serves all Kansans and vote Sen. Laura Kelley for governor on Nov. 6.