The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

September 21, 2012

Kansas’ state voter ID law tested in August primary

There were 251 votes statewide in Kansas in the Aug. 6 primary that weren’t counted because the voters didn’t present the proper photo identification under the new voter ID law.

They probably weren’t trying to commit voter impersonation fraud, sources, including Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, say. Nor is it likely they were disenfranchised, the same sources say.

Whether others who didn’t bother to go to the polls because of the hurdles created by the law were disenfranchised by it remains a source of heated disagreement.


When Kansas voters went to the polls on Aug. 6 for the primary, 405 people didn’t have the proper photo identification. They were allowed to cast provisional ballots.

Kobach said the 405 is one-tenth of 1 percent of the 398,367 ballots cast in the primary.

Those who cast provisional ballots because of lack of identification had until the vote was final, when they were canvassed, to present their identification to election officials. That resulted in 154 of the votes being counted, while another 251 weren’t counted because the voters didn’t return with their identification.

“I think it’s an outstanding success,” Kobach said of the performance of the Kansas ID law in the August primary. “I think it’s an extraordinary success.”

He said, based on experience of county election officials during the April city elections, it’s likely that those who didn’t return with their IDs before the canvass didn’t want to go to the trouble, because preliminary results indicated their votes wouldn’t change an outcome.

“Most of them had a photo ID and decided it wasn’t worth the effort,” Kobach said. “They weren’t disenfranchised.”

The Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law in its report “The Challenge of Obtaining Voter Identification” lists Kansas as one of 10 states with the most restrictive voter ID laws. It states that 11 percent of eligible voters in those states lack voter ID and must travel to a government office to get one, which will be difficult and costly for many.

“The result is plain: voter ID laws will make it harder for hundreds of thousands of poor Americans to vote,” reads the report summary. “They place a serious burden on a core constitutional right that should be universally available to every American citizen.”

Kobach disputes the report’s findings, pointing to the August primary as evidence.

“I think the Brennan Center has been laughable,” Kobach said. “They won’t acknowledge success. Their figures have no basis in fact. They’re rapidly losing credibility.”

Kobach said he thinks almost everyone has a photo ID.

“A very, very high percentage will have a photo ID,” he said. “We’re confident the vast majority of people have a photo ID.”

Text Only
Local News
  • r072814dogbike.jpg Cross-country trip promotes animal adoption

    Where’s Bixby? Not the town in Oklahoma, but the dog on the back of a bicycle ridden by Mike Minnick. On Monday, the two were in Joplin, one stop on a cross-country bike trip to promote the adoption of dogs and cats from local shelters.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Seneca man draws concurrent term in sexual abuse case

    A 39-year-old man who sexually abused a girl over a four-year period in both Joplin and Seneca received a 15-year sentence Monday in Newton County that will run concurrently with a term he received earlier this year in Jasper County.

    July 28, 2014

  • Defendant who pulled knife on ER doctor sent for treatment

    A man accused of pulling a knife on a Freeman Hospital West emergency room doctor pleaded guilty to a reduced charge Monday and was sentenced to the state prison system’s Institutional Treatment Center.

    July 28, 2014

  • Judge lifts seal on records in Parsons quadruple slaying

    A judge has rescinded his order sealing court records in the case of David Bennett Jr., who is accused of killing a Parsons woman and her three children.

    July 28, 2014

  • Wal-Mart to build second local Neighborhood Market

    A second Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market store is planned for Joplin. The company has filed an application with the city to rezone nearly six acres of land on the west side of town in the tornado zone to build a new Neighborhood Market and gas station.

    July 28, 2014

  • r072814mailcar.jpg VIDEO: Train mail car trailered on Joplin's Main Street to Redings Mill

    With a police escort leading the way Monday, postal car No. 34 breezed through downtown Joplin en route to its new home in Redings Mill, where it was greeted by a welcome party of local residents and railroad enthusiasts.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo 1 Slideshow

  • Anti-landfill group seeks grand jury probe

    As more than 200 people filed into Riverton High School on Sunday to attend an anti-landfill group meeting, many stopped to sign a petition asking the Cherokee County District Court to summon a grand jury to investigate how land was acquired by the city of Galena for a proposed landfill.

    July 27, 2014

  • 072814_jd anderson.jpg VIDEO: Noel strongman advances on talent show

    The past week has been busier than normal for Noel resident J.D. Anderson. Members of the production crew for NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” told him they have shot more footage of him than of other contestants for the next episode. “They said I have the busiest schedule of anyone this week,” Anderson told the Globe in a phone interview Friday. “There’s so many fun things you can do with B-roll as a strongman.”

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • AndraBryanStefanoni.jpg Andra Bryan Stefanoni: ‘Annie’ production is a family thing

    There’s a twist to this week’s production of “Annie” at Memorial Auditorium. The show, a beloved classic tale of an orphan girl in search of a family, is full of real-life family members.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • 072514 Band Box.jpg Jo Ellis: Carthage icon continues to play in local restaurant

    Chicago Coin’s Band-Box, also known as “Strike Up the Band,” has been a Carthage icon since the mid- to late 1950s. Any customer who frequented Red’s Diner, or Ray’s Cafe, and now the Pancake Hut is familiar with the pulsating rhythms and movements of this mechanical device.

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

Must Read


Given that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that electronic devices and communications are protected from searches and seizure without a warrant, do you think Missouri needs Amendment 9 added to its constitution?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter