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Kris Kobach Meets the Kochs

By David Norlin
Opinion | May 8, 2011

SALINA, Kan. - Alan Jilka, on these pages, has presented a sterling case for opposition to Kris Kobach. Wednesday, May 4th, at the state county clerks conference, some folks outside Salina's Ramada Inn created an outdoor 'free our voters,' anti-Kobach presence. Equally important, there was an indoor presence, up close and personal, for Kobach himself.

Besides a Kobachi presentation which gained applause only from one-third of the county clerks, his press conference found him face to face with Koch Bros. impersonators Gary Swartzendruber and Bob Homolka. Some pointed questions followed.

Kobach said they would be surprised at the grades he received at Harvard, but he did not indicate he would produce his Wisconsin birth certificate. When asked about E-Verifying cattle, immigrants, voters, and feral pigs, he demurred.

One person remarked during the day-long training event that the cost of implementing the new Kansas voter E-Verify ID legislation seemed like budget overkill. It would, after all, include statewide training meetings for every county elected official, a new statewide election committee of county clerks to be formed in the state, and numerous printed publications and local events to insure training -- all because there might have been 200 irregularities in the past 10 years.

Kobach took the position that the state of Kansas needed to be "safe." (The question is, for whom?) He suggested the slogan "Trust, but Verify" for voters, likening it to former president Reagan's "trust but verify" military policy for engagement with Russia's leaders. So, Kansas voters may be as dangerous as armed nukes at the polls?

In the past, Kobach has advised cities in other states on immigration policies including Fremont, Nebraska and Farmers Branch, Texas, not to mention the state of Arizona on SB 1070. Each piece of legislation generated by Kobach has resulted in significant court costs. Farmers Branch Texas has spent over 4 million defending their law with Kobach pocketing over $100,000 in defense of the legislation after he wrote it for the city of 27,000 residents. A sweet deal -- but not for Kansans.

Kansas is in the process of implementing a new much more restrictive voter ID program proposed by Kobach, called the "Secure and Fair [but not free] Elections Act."


3 Comments

Thank you, David Norlin for passing on this important news article through the pages of KFP. Provocative and humorous protests you described above should signify every important gathering when reactionary Kansas conservatives assemble to demonstrate their "responsibilities of office" as leaders of all Kansans.

I also congratulate you for using social media, like the You Tube video embedded in this article which will allow dissemination to a far broader audience than that which trolls KFP.

The recent Kobach facts you described,where his "job" entails developing inherently racist and discriminatory laws in far off jurisdictions like Nebraska and Texas were news to me.

I often describe this to my neighbors from N. Jefferson County, KS., as "moonlighting" for the real economic big shots that pull the levers, make the strategy for, the mythical "free markets" and consequentially benefit from crony "speculation."

A recent $400,000 bill presented from former KSAG Phill Kline's lawyers to the state government dispensing our tax dollars was notable. Also that he and his "pro-life" pro-war supporters raised an additional $150.000 in an internet marathon where other elected Kansas representatives appeared to encourage financial support for Kline. We can only hope that eventually Kobach, like Kline will be regulated to teaching their bastardized interpretations of "constitutional law" to dead Rev. Jerry Fallwell's Liberty University.

Realistically, as enlightened Kansans, we should not hold our breath and instead create creative forms of opposition, as described above, and make sure people know about it.


Kobach, more as cultural warrior does have his media outlets, as in his Sunday evening radio show from Fox News KCMO 710AM which reaches every household in N.E. Kansas and beyond.


David, I'd like to second what Michael Caddell (or bluebarnnewscentral, his handle) said in his comment above in congratulating you for this endeavor. Wonderful protest and wonderful post here at KFP. It reminds me of the Sarah Palin spoof you guys did some months ago. Keep up the good work. You inspire us!

You do have many readers here at KFP (close to a million each month at last count), so keep posting the good news. Good news spreads like wild fire at a well-read site like this one!


Thanks, Lola and Mike,

I do need to give credit on some of the research to a teacher friend of mine who does some excellent "underground"--and above ground--work here in Salina and in the state. And to the two "Koch Brothers," who have adapted street theater to get more awareness among the masses.

Thanks, too, for reminding me and readers about the "Reality Not Celebrity" event bringing Pulitzer-prize-nominated writer George Pyle to town while Sarah spread her nonsense across town. We had folks come from the East and the West Borders of Kansas and packed the Country Club for that event.

It didn't keep the local commerce establishment from bringing in Newt Gingrich the next year, with the ploy of having Bill Bradley to present the "liberal" side of a supposed conversation.


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