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00000179-cdc6-d978-adfd-cfc6d7d40002Coverage of the issues, races and people shaping Kansas elections in 2016, including statewide coverage in partnership with KCUR, Kansas Public Radio, and High Plains Public Radio.

League Of Women Voters To Appeal Judge's Decision On Proof Of Citizenship

Elle Moxley
The League of Women Voters is hosting candidate forums in the weeks leading up the August primary. Johnson County voters check the boundaries of their districts.

Kansans who register to vote using a federal form at the Department of Motor Vehicles will have to provide proof of citizenship as a lawsuit plays out, a judge ruled Wednesday.

The League of Women Voters and other civil rights groups had sought a preliminary injunction to block such rules in Kansas, Alabama and Georgia.

“Because it’s a barrier to voting,” says Dolores Furtado, the immediate past president of the League of Women Voters of Kansas. “The percentage of eligible registered people that vote is sometimes terrible.”

It’s the league’s position that Kansans who register to vote using the federal form shouldn’t be subject to stringent proof-of-citizenship rules championed by Secretary of State Kris Kobach.

Furtado says the voter registrations of thousands of Kansans who initiated the process at the DMV are currently in limbo.

“I characterize it right now as we have a lot of people who’ve taken the first step,” Furtado says. “They need to take another step, then they’re on their way to walking.”

Check here to see if your voter registration is complete.

Furtado says the League of Women Voters will likely appeal Judge Richard J. Leon’s decision. “It is the one day of the year where the power of every American that votes is equal,” she says. “We really want to have the voices heard.”

Until the case is settled, Furtado says her focus will be on helping Kansans provide the documentation they need to register to vote.


Elle Moxley is a reporter for KCUR. You can reach her on Twitter @ellemoxley.

Elle covers education for KCUR. The best part of her job is talking to students. Before coming to KCUR in 2014, Elle covered Indiana education policy for NPR’s StateImpact project. Her work covering Indiana’s exit from the Common Core was nationally recognized with an Edward R. Murrow award. Her work at KCUR has been recognized by the Missouri Broadcasters Association and the Kansas City Press Club. She is a graduate of the University Of Missouri School Of Journalism. Elle regularly tweets photos of her dog, Kingsley. There is a wounded Dr. Ian Malcolm bobblehead on her desk.