Federal Appeals Court To Rule On Kansas Voting Rule

A federal appeals court in Denver will decide whether Kansas can keep thousands of people who haven’t presented documents proving they’re citizens from voting in November’s election.

Three judges from the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments in the case Tuesday from Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach and the American Civil Liberties Union but didn’t indicate how soon they could rule.

Kansas wants the court to overturn a ruling by a federal judge in May that temporarily blocked the state from disenfranchising people who registered at motor vehicle offices but didn’t provide documents such as birth certificates or naturalization papers. That was about 18,000 people at the time. If the order is allowed to stand, Kobach says up to an estimated 50,000 people who haven’t proven they’re citizens could be able to cast ballots in the fall.

The ACLU says the federal motor voter law intended to increase registration doesn’t allow states to ask applicants for extra documents.