ACLU Opposes Bill Giving Unprecedented Prosecutorial Power to Secretary of State Kris Kobach

May 21, 2015 4:45 pm

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KANSAS CITY, KANSAS – The Kansas House of Representatives gave Senate Bill 34 (SB 34) initial approval this morning with a 63-57 vote. Final approval of this bill would give Secretary of State Kris Kobach the power to prosecute voting crime in Kansas – a move that is strongly opposed by the American Civil Liberties Union of Kansas (ACLU-KS).

“This is a clear overstep of authority for the Secretary of State that creates unnecessary barriers for Kansan voters,” said Micah Kubic, Executive Director of ACLU-KS.

SB 34 would upgrade several voting crimes from misdemeanors to felonies while giving Kobach the authority to prosecute individuals for voting crime – a power that no other Secretary of State in the nation has ever been given.

“Voting-related crimes are very rare,” Kubic said. “If they do occur, they should be taken seriously and managed by those with the most capability to do so – our county and state attorneys.”

SB 34 will now travel to the Governor Brownback’s desk where it will either be signed in approval or vetoed. To learn more about SB 34 please visit www.aclukansas.org/press.

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