Kris Kobach, Kansass Foreign Minister, was found guilty by a federal judge in a ruling issued Wednesday. (Andrew Harrer / Bloomberg)
A federal judge has officially established Kansas & # 39; s chief election, Kris Kobach – a Republican who has helped direct the much-vaunted Commission of President Trump to investigate alleged electoral fraud – in defiance of the The court rigorously ruled that Kobach was "dishonest" and ordered him to pay damages for the opposing team's legal fees.
The order comes from a lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union in 2016 on behalf of Kansas voters in federal court against a voter ID law. The 2013 law requires that individuals who have registered for the first time to provide evidence of their citizenship, such as: A passport or birth certificate. The ACLU argues that the law violates the National Voter Registration Act, which requires state DMVs to allow people to register with only the "minimum amount of necessary information".
U.S. District Judge Julie Robinson issued an interim injunction blocking the law in 2016 and demanded that the applications of about 18,000 people whose materials had been kept posted with a postcard confirming their registration and polling station, like other voters in Kansas.
The ACLU has recently argued that many voters had not received the postcard; A man who had joined the lawsuit, Charles Stricker, who was affected by the law, testified that even after the injunction, he was told that the legal questions about voters' rights were "in the air."
Robinson supported the ACLU's request in January to hold Kobach, Kansas & # 39; Foreign Minister, in contempt for the mistakes the court had previously ordered to comply with him.
In her ruling, she twice said that Kobach had acted "Insincere," Robinson wrote that she found "clear and convincing evidence" that he had disobeyed the injunction.
"Kansans expected these postcards to confirm their registration status, and the defendant assured the court that it had been sent before the 2016 general election," wrote Robinson. "They were not, and the fact that he sent another message to those voters does not completely remove the contempt."
Robinson also wrote about evidence that Kobach "deliberately failed to ensure that the district election officials were clearly and effectively trained to enforce the voting rules enforced by the injunction."
"Official Education The County Handbook further indicated that all voter registration candidates had to submit DPOC [documented proof of citizenship] and led to confusion and misinformation in their efforts to informally and piecemeal."
The decision was a Another blow for Kobach, a Trump ally and candidate for the Governor of Kansas, who led the president's "election integrity" panel, which was dissolved earlier this year following bipartisan complaints by states and several federal lawsuits. Kobach was also fined $ 1,000 for a case described by another federal judge as a "model" of "misleading the court" in voter ID cases.
Kobach spokesman Moriah Day said in a statement that the Secretary of State had refused comment
"The prosecutor will appeal this decision," it said in the statement.
The injunction blocking the 2013 law applies until the trial is closed in the case that began in March
According to a complaint filed by the ACLU in the court, 22,000 Kansas voters were prosecuted Documentation requirement was suspended from registration or deleted from the registration system, which accounted for almost 14 percent of newcomers.
Two of Kobach's witnesses said that since 2000, Kansas has identified 127 people who are believed to be non-citizens when registering or trying to register, the ACLU said. The ACLU said only 11 were supposed to have actually issued a ballot.
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