Kansas City Star / YouTube Kris Kobach talks Trump...
Kansas City Star / YouTube

Kris Kobach, Republican candidate for Governor in Kansas, architect of CrossCheck voter suppression and the author of questionable questions being added to the US Census, talks a big game about why we need voter suppression — but some of it, well, he just doesn’t want you to know.

Using taxpayer dollars the Secretary of State is doing everything possible to prevent transparency, calling in the big guns to stop tape of a deposition before the US federal court from becoming public.

From the Associated Press:

 An attorney for Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach is seeking to delay the release of a video of Kobach being questioned in a federal voting-rights lawsuit to avoid hurting his campaign for governor.

A court filing late Wednesday by Sue Becker draws an explicit link between stopping the video’s release and Kobach’s campaign as the Republican nominee for governor, The Wichita Eagle reported.Becker is general counsel for the secretary of state’s office.

The video was played during the trial of a lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union against a state law requiring new voters to provide proof of their U.S. citizenship when registering. The video provides details about Kobach’s private talks with President Donald Trump and members of Congress.

Kobach, who is using taxpayer-funded attorneys to protest the potential release, clearly has concerns that the tape — which was recorded as part of a case that ended up striking down the Kansas law and resulting in him being fined for contempt of court — might not look so good for his campaign.

Speaking the matter, the Laura Kelly campaign spokesman had this to say:

Kelly campaign spokeswoman Johanna Warshaw also called the position of Kobach’s office “unacceptable” and shows that “his taxpayer funded staff is more concerned with Kris Kobach’s campaign than the state.”

Warshaw’s complaint is only partially correct, as many of his state-paid staff, including campaign communication director Danedri Herbert, are employed by both entities, having a job both in the Secretary of State’s office and on his campaign.

What is interesting is that taxpayer dollars are apparently, according to the filing, being used for exactly the reason Warshaw calls unacceptable. The Topeka Capital Journal covers the filing:

Sue Becker, an attorney working for Kobach in the secretary of state’s office, filed documents Wednesday arguing against sharing the tape pending appeal of a U.S. District Court trial verdict striking down as unconstitutional the Kansas law adopted in 2011 requiring new voters to provide proof of citizenship to register.

In support of that motion, Becker said the videotape would be used by partisan organizations and political candidates in the governor’s race prior to the Nov. 6 vote.

“Should the videotape be released and then used in some way to oppose the defendant’s candidacy,” she said in the document, “it would cost the defendant tens of thousands of dollars in new ads and manpower to attempt to respond to whatever assertions are made using cobbled together deposition soundbites.”

That’s right. We are going to use taxpayer-funded attorneys, who supposedly represent the state — and are making one argument: the release of documents done as part of his job duties serving as Secretary of State should not be released because of the political cost to his campaign.

This isn’t about protecting the duties of the office or protecting Kansas taxpayers of all party affiliations who pay for his salary and staff, no, the attorney is arguing it may have a political price tag as the reason the state of Kansas will oppose.

Talk about swamp alligators.

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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.

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