The American Civil Liberties Union sued Kansas officials on Thursday over what it calls illegal demands for additional proof of citizenship for people trying to register to vote when they renewed or applied for drivers’ licenses.
In a suit filed in federal court, the ACLU claimed that more than 35,000 potential voters were blocked over two years from voting because of the additional hurdle – or nearly 14 percent of all new registrants.
The Kansas law requiring documents like a birth certificate or U.S. passport for voter registration, which took effect Jan. 1, 2013, is one of numerous voter ID laws passed by Republican-led state legislatures in recent years. The ACLU alleges that Kansas goes beyond what is required by federal law.
Democrats have argued that ID laws target voters who typically support the Democratic Party, such as the young and minorities. Proponents of the measures say they are intended to prevent voter fraud.
Named plaintiffs in the Kansas suit include Ralph Ortiz, a U.S. Air Force veteran who registered to vote while renewing his driver’s license. A year later, he received a letter telling him he was suspended from voting and had to provide additional proof of citizenship.
“I joined the military to help protect American freedoms, yet now I’m being denied the most fundamental right in our democracy,” said Ortiz, 35, in a statement.
The lawsuit also named a 36-year-old Lawrence man who had been born on a now-closed Illinois military base and has not been able to find his birth certificate, and a 57-year-old Wichita woman who cannot afford the fee to get her Maryland birth certificate.
Those affected by the Kansas law are disproportionately young – 44 percent of those on the suspended voter list were between the ages of 18 and 29, the lawsuit said. Almost 54 percent were unaffiliated with any political party, the suit said.
ACLU lawyer Dale Ho said that some voters showed citizenship documents but then were told they had to submit them again.
“It’s a bit of a bureaucratic mess over there,” said Ho.
The lawsuit names Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach and Secretary of Revenue Nick Jordan as defendants. Craig McCullah, a spokesman for Kobach, said the office was reviewing the lawsuit and had no immediate comment.
(Reporting by Mary Wisniewski in Chicago; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)
Trump gives himself ‘A+’ on COVID-19 response as US death toll hits grim 200,000 milestone
"Trump and his cowardly enablers, they all have blood on their hands," said an activist who lost his father to Covid-19.
As the U.S. Covid-19 death toll was all but certain to hit 200,000 on Monday with the virus still taking the lives of nearly 1,000 Americans each day, President Donald Trump told Fox News that he would give himself a perfect grade for his handling of a pandemic that has infected more than 6.8 million people across the country, permanently eliminated millions of jobs, and destroyed countless livelihoods.
CNN host left in tears after heartbreaking report on COVID-19 victims
During a segment on CNN this Monday, anchor Brianna Keilar was moved to tears while honoring people who've lost their lives to the coronavirus, especially while telling the story of a couple who died holding hands.
Keilar recounted how a couple married for over 50 years died from the virus only minutes apart after being admitted to the hospital on August 11. When it became clear they wouldn't survive, they were place in the same ward, where they died holding hands.
Watch the video below:
So-called moderate Georgia senator brags she’s as conservative as a pagan barbarian who killed his own brother to rule
Sen. Kelly Loeffler's (R-GA) new campaign ad brags that she's "more conservative than Attila the Hun," with an actor grunting off a "list" of things he would do.
It appears neither Loeffler nor her staff thought to google who Attila the Hun was and why associating yourself with him could be a public relations disaster.
Among the things the History Channel remembers about Attila, was that he killed his own brother to ensure absolute power. He invaded Gaul in an attempt to score a wife. He also had a "legendary lust for gold."