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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.

Kansas Voting Rule Goes To Court Friday

Stephen Koranda
KPR/File photo
Mark Johnson speaks against the new voter registration rule at a meeting earlier this month.

The ACLU will be asking a judge tomorrow to block a regulation that will throw out some votes cast by thousands of Kansans.

The regulation affects people who registered to vote at the DMV but failed to provide proof of U.S. citizenship, as required by Kansas law. The rule says those people can vote, but only their votes in federal races will be counted.

Mark Johnson has been working on the ACLU lawsuit trying to change that.

“What the hearing on Friday is seeking is a temporary injunction. They’re seeking a decision by the judge as quickly as possible as to whether this rule is going to stay in place,” Johnson says. "I think it’s quite likely that there will be a decision before the primary election on August 2nd."

The ACLU argues it’s a violation of the law for Secretary of State Kris Kobach to pick and choose which votes to count for certain races while throwing out other votes. Kobach’s office has argued that the rule complies with a federal court order while still enforcing state voting laws.

Johnson is urging any of the affected Kansans to vote in all races on the ballot, in case the rule is put on hold.

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.