The Latest: Court weighs proof-of-citizenship voting law
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The Latest on an appeals court weighing whether to resurrect a Kansas proof-of-citizenship voting law (all times local):
A federal appeals court has heard arguments about whether Kansas should be allowed to resurrect a law that required people to submit proof of citizenship before registering to vote.
During a hearing Monday in Salt Lake City, Judge Jerome Holmes of the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals pointed to evidence that Kansas’ requirement kept more than 30,000 people from registering over the three years it was in effect, even though nearly all of them were citizens.
Kansas’ solicitor general, Toby Crouse, said much of that was due to bureaucratic problems with the way the law was implemented, and that it doesn’t make the law unconstitutional.
Dale Ho, of the American Civil Liberties Union, argued that those problems are “baked in” to the measure and that the number is compelling evidence that the law created an illegal hurdle to the ballot box.
The three-judge panel didn’t indicate when it might rule.
An appeals court will consider the constitutionality of a struck-down Kansas statute that had required people to provide documents proving U.S. citizenship before they could register to vote.
A three-judge panel of the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments Monday in Salt Lake City in a case with national implications for voting rights.
At issue is a legal challenge to a voter registration statute requiring people to provide documentary proof of citizenship such as a birth certificate, passport or naturalization papers. Kansas is appealing a ruling last year that found its law violated the constitutional right to vote.
The state faces an uphill battle to resurrect the law championed by former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who led President Donald Trump’s now-defunct voter fraud commission.