TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNW) — There’s a controversy brewing over some Kansas election bills. While some argue the bills are designed to keep the state’s elections safe, secure and free, others would argue the bills are disguised as voter suppression.
Kansas Secretary of State Scott Schwab told KSN the bills are not perfect. In fact, Schwab went on to say that some of the bills, as they are written right now, need work.
Schwab was talking about a bill that limits how many voter drop boxes are allowed in counties, and it also cuts the voter registration deadline time down by three days. Under the bill, it would give larger cities like Wichita and Overland Park the majority of the mobile drop boxes, while more rural areas would have fewer or maybe even zero boxes.
“I don’t think that’s what the Senate intended, but that is what they did, and we’ll see if they can fix that up in the House,” said Schwab. “Because voter registration would now end on a Saturday, well now every county has to pay for overtime for their staff to come in on a Saturday, and then mail ballots would have to go out the next day on a Sunday, but you can’t send a mail ballot on a Sunday because there’s no mail on a Sunday.”
Another bill allows the state to take some people off of the voter rolls after the person has not voted in four years. Supporters say it’s about having accurate voter records about the people who live at the address. However, groups like the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Kansas are coming out against the bill arguing the bills are measures aimed at suppressing votes and even punishing people who don’t vote.
“It’s not about removing people who are registered to vote and are legally registered, but they just don’t want to vote. That’s their right, but we don’t want them off of the rolls. We want to make sure folks who are no longer living in that apartment that they’re no longer registered at that apartment,” said Schwab.
Schwab did reiterate that Kansas did not find any evidence of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 Election. He added that having voter ID laws also helps our state cut down on the possibility of those who try and attempt it. However, the ACLU of Kansas also opposes that viewpoint as it argues it discriminates against both low-income Kansans and minorities.