Kris Kobach’s Kansas Is Only State Not To Respond To NYT’s Voter Fraud Survey

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach listens and takes note as a judge declares in Shawnee County District Court that the state must count potentially thousands of votes from people who registered without providing documentation of their U.S. citizenship, Friday, July 29, 2016, in Topeka, Kan. Kobach had directed local election officials to count only their votes in federal races, not state and local ones. (AP Photo/John Hanna)
John Hanna/AP

A New York Times survey that found very few instances of voter fraud in the 2016 election received the input of every state but one: Kansas, where the top elections official is Secretary of State Kris Kobach.

Kobach has been an ardent supporter of voter restrictions, which he champions on the claim that they’re needed to prevent voter fraud. He has also been an adviser to President-elect Donald Trump, who has argued, without any evidence, that “millions” of people voted illegally in the November’s election.

It is unclear from the New York Times story whether the Times reached out to Kobach directly, his Secretary of State’s office or some other state entity.

“But inquiries to all 50 states (every one but Kansas responded) found no states that reported indications of widespread fraud,” the Times said in Sunday’s report.

Among the 49 other states that engaged in the Times’ inquiries, elections officials found little evidence that illegal voting was a major problem. Some reported a handful of cases they had investigated. Georgia had opened 25 inquiries out of more than 4.1 million ballots cast, while Tennessee officials said that they had tallied 40 allegations deemed credible among 4.3 million primary and general election votes.

But in many places, even those sort of investigations don’t pan out. Kentucky officials said that the 18 allegations of voter fraud reported on its hotline were found to be not credible upon investigations. Twenty-six of the states participating said they had found no credible cases of voter fraud, and in eight states, election officials said they had only had heard of only one.

“The findings unambiguously debunk repeated statements by President-elect Donald J. Trump that millions of illegal voters backed his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton,” the Times said. “They also refute warnings by Republican governors in Maine and North Carolina that election results could not be trusted.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tierney Sneed is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. She previously worked for U.S. News and World Report. She grew up in Florida and attended Georgetown University.
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