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Kobach Considering Rule to Create Two Classes of Voters

Voter registration applications for more than 12,000 people in Kansas are on hold because of missing documents that could prove U.S. citizenship. A law that took effect this year requires people who register to vote for the first time in Kansas to prove their citizenship.

Secretary of State Kris Kobach says he's considering a rule that could allow those voters to cast ballots in certain elections.

If you register to vote and you’re required to provide citizenship documents, but don’t turn them in, then you don’t meet the rules for voting in a Kansas election. But you do meet the rules for voting in a federal election.

The Lawrence Journal World reported this week that Kobach says Kansas could eventually have two classes of voters: people who could only vote in federal elections and people who could vote in both federal and state elections.

Critics are concerned a two-tier system would create new problems, as the state is already struggling to implement the current law.

Stephen Koranda is Statehouse reporter for Kansas Public Radio and the Kansas News Service, a collaboration of KCUR, KMUW, Kansas Public Radio and High Plains Radio covering health, education and politics.