Appeals Court Bats Down Kobach Request To Overturn Contempt Finding

Chris Kleponis/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images

An appeals court dismissed Tuesday a request by Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach to overturn a federal judge’s finding that he was in contempt of court. The three-judge panel of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said in its dismissal that Kobach had appealed the contempt finding prematurely.

“Although the district court stated that it was imposing sanctions, specific sanctions
have not yet been imposed,” the judges wrote. “Here, not only has the district court not issued findings of fact and conclusions of law or final judgment, the district court has not determined a discernable amount of sanctions.”

U.S. District Judge Julie Robinson found Kobach in contempt of court last month for his failure to follow her order temporarily blocking the state’s proof-of-citizenship voter registration requirement for the 2016 election. She knocked Kobach for failing to ensure that affected voters received the voter registration confirmation cards that typically go out to voters, and for not correcting an election workers manual posted online to reflect her order.

Her ruling on the merits of the proof-of-citizenship requirement, which was challenged by the ACLU and others, is expected in the weeks to come. She is also still being briefed on the attorneys fees she is requiring Kobach to pay related to the contempt motion.

At the trial in March, Kobach — who is representing himself rather than relying on Kansas’ attorney general — and his legal team ran into a number of issues following proper trial procedure.

Read the appeals court’s dismissal of his contempt-of-court appeal below:

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