Federal Judge Puts Hold On Kansas Law

A federal judge has ordered Kansas to suspend a new law prohibiting out-of-state groups from mailing advance ballot applications, siding with two national nonprofit groups that contend it disenfranchises voters.

The judge granted the preliminary injunction against the law sought by VoteAmerica and the Voter Participation Center.

She also rejected the state’s efforts to dismiss the lawsuit.

The judge noted in her ruling the critical constitutional issues that still need to be decided in the case, finding that the public interest “leans in favor” of preliminarily blocking the law.

She also wrote that the voting rights groups are likely to succeed in the lawsuit on their claim that the state law restricts their ability to engage in protected First Amendment activity.

In a separate state lawsuit challenging a different voting provision, a county district judge in September denied four groups’ request to temporarily block the law, expressing strong doubts about arguments that it hinders efforts to register and educate Kansas voters.