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Kansas Voter Law Facing New Scrutiny

Associated Press - December 27, 2013 9:59 am

Federal election officials are asking a federal judge to stay his order that the agency help Kansas and Arizona enforce state laws requiring voters to prove their U.S. citizenship.

Federal election officials are asking a federal judge to stay his order that the agency help Kansas and Arizona enforce state laws requiring voters to prove their U.S. citizenship.

A proof-of-citizenship requirement for Kansas voters is likely to come under attack once the Legislature opens its annual session in January.

But the debate over the policy championed by Secretary of State Kris Kobach also will play in out in federal court.

The law took effect at the start of 2013. More than 19,000 Kansas residents have their registrations on hold because they haven’t provided election officials with papers documenting their U.S. citizenship.

Several Democratic lawmakers have proposed rewriting or repealing the proof-of-citizenship law. Even some of Kobach’s fellow Republicans in the GOP-dominated Legislature want to look for ways to shrink the list of affected voters.

Kansas and Arizona also have filed a federal lawsuit seeking to compel a federal agency to help their states carry out proof-of-citizenship requirements.

City of Salina