FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
April 28, 2023
VOTING RIGHTS REMAIN PROTECTED IN KANSAS (FOR NOW)
TOPEKA, KS – The latest attempt to undermine Kansans’ right to vote has been defeated. On Thursday, the legislature sustained Governor Laura Kelly’s veto of Senate Bill 209, which would have shortened the deadline to return mail-in ballots, requiring them to be returned by 7 p.m. on Election Day.
“The legislature should be working to find more ways for Kansas voters to cast their ballots, not less,” said KDP Chair Jeanna Repass. “As the daughter of a Vietnam War veteran and a civil rights activist, I was disappointed to see so many in the legislature try to make it harder for Kansans – especially members of our armed services – to vote. Your vote is your voice, and no one in Kansas should have their voice silenced. I am pleased to see these efforts have been defeated for now, but we must continue to protect and expand Kansans’ right to vote.”
In 2017, the legislature voted nearly unanimously – 40-0 in the Senate and 123-1 in the House – to pass a law to allow for a three-day grace period to ensure all votes, including those cast by members of our armed services across the country and abroad, are counted. Despite that, the legislature worked to reverse their own policy just a few years later via Senate Bill 209, proving how politicized the issue of protecting voting rights has become.