Database effort at core of voter-ID 'Project'


Special to The Hays Daily News

HUTCHINSON -- Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach's efforts to thwart illegal voting include promoting voter database sharing with other states, to check for voters registered in more than one state.

The program started before Kobach came into office, said Kay Curtis, spokeswoman for the secretary of state's office, but Kansas was an early state and some news accounts refer to it as the Kansas Project.

Kobach gave a presentation on the Interstate Voter Registration Cross Check Program at the July conference of the National Association of Secretaries of State, Curtis said, generating new interest.

The program is intended to block double registration and double voting.

In 2005, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and Iowa shared voter registration data. By July, the multistate program had expanded to include Arizona, Colorado, South Dakota, Illinois, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky, Oklahoma and Michigan.

Kobach pointed out in his presentation the program's "success in Kansas" has meant the discovery of double votes referred for prosecution.

There were several instances in 2008 in Kansas, and eight instances in 2010, he pointed out.

In Colorado, four people were indicted for voting in Colorado and Arizona, Kobach also noted.

Recently, efforts in Texas to verify if some Texas voters were "dead" -- and some people receiving notices weren't -- prompted an outcry over purging registration rolls.

Curtis said she was not aware of any special effort planned by the Kansas secretary of State's office to purge registration lists in Kansas prior to the Nov. 6 election.