Today, Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius vetoed House Bill 2019. If signed by the govenor, the bill would have instituted a burdensome proof of citizenship and identification requirement, potentially disenfranchising thousands of Kansas’ elderly, disabled, minority, and low-income voters.
People For the American Way Senior Vice President and National Field Director Mary Jean Collins today praised Gov. Sebelius for standing up for the rights of Kansas voters, and hailed the veto as a victory for all voters. Collins’ statement follows:
“Kansans need election reform legislation that makes voting more accessible, prevents voter intimidation and increases voter participation. Instead of making it easier for Kansans to cast their votes, this bill would have made it harder for many eligible voters. Gov. Sebelius took a principled stand in favor of Kansans’ right to vote and vetoed House Bill 2019.
“The problem is not voter fraud. There’s simply no evidence that in-person voter fraud is a widespread problem, or that ineligible voters are going to the polls to vote. The problem is that too few people vote.
“States have shown that they are ready to address the real issues — removing the burdens that make it too complicated, hard and costly for voters to go to the polls. That’s real election reform.
“Momentum is building against voter ID legislation across the country. Legislators in Missouri, Maryland, Colorado, Illinois, Mississippi and Oklahoma successfully defeated voter ID bills that would have undermined the right to vote for millions of citizens. We hope Kansas legislators, and lawmakers across the country, focus their efforts on encouraging, not discouraging, voter participation in their next legislative sessions.”
- Read the National Network on Election Reform coalition’s statement on the veto (PDF)