Kris Kobach's Terrible Horrible No-Good Very Fucked Day
Kris Kobach, who is the World's Worst Trial Lawyer (Rudy Giuliani doesn't do trials any more), the Kansas secretary of state, and also Kansas's Republican nominee for governor, had a lousy long weekend. Friday, the Kansas Supreme Court ordered a grand jury investigation into a claim that Kobach deliberately avoided registering eligible voters in 2016. Then Tuesday morning, former Kansas Governor Bill Graves, a fellow Republican, endorsed Kobach's Democratic opponent, Laura Kelly, because holy hopped-up Cthulhu on a continent-sized Roomba, have you seen what a skeevy asshole Kobach is?
The grand jury thing actually derives from a weird and brilliant thing in Kansas law left over from when the state did Good Government: Kansas is one of just six states where citizens can file a petition demanding a grand jury investigation. After the 2016 election, Lawrence resident Steven Davis gathered the required number of signatures to call a grand jury to look into whether Kobach (or the secretary of state's office) had
engaged in "destroying, obstructing, or failing to deliver online voter registration," as well as possessing falsely made or altered registration books, preventing qualified electors from voting, and "being grossly neglectful with respect to their election duties."
Kobach has said the whole thing is politically motivated, since Davis was an unsuccessful candidate for the Kansas legislature, and heaven knows if there's anything Kris Kobach abhors, it's playing politics with voter registration. When it's done by anyone but him.
The petitions were initially tossed out -- twice -- by a county court, where Douglas County Judge Peggy Kittel said the petition hadn't proven any specific crimes had taken place, but in June, a state appeals court said nah, mang, the state's petition laws allow "general allegations that, if proven to be true, would constitute crimes." Friday, the Kansas Supreme Court said, Yes You Are Right, get a
rope grand jury together.
So while Kobach runs for governer as Mr. Tuff On Voter Fraud, he'll be investigated by a grand jury for maybe defrauding voters of the right to vote. NICE TIMES! This case, we should note, is entirely separate from this year's earlier federal trial that ended up tossing out Kansas's voter registration law, and finding Kobach in contempt of court, too, although that contempt charge stemmed from completely different voter-registration fuckery by Kobach.
After Friday's state Supreme Court funtimes, Kobach got another jolt Tuesday in the form of that endorsement of Laura Kelly in a statement by former Gov. Bill Graves, who served from 1995 to 2003, before the phrase "What's the Matter With Kansas?" became a sad cliché and the state's face and budget were eaten by leopards.
"Laura Kelly is the only Democrat I have ever endorsed for public office," Graves said in the statement. "And the reason I'm doing that now is because I believe so much is at stake in the state of Kansas. I have known Laura for over thirty years. She has all the qualities and all the capabilities that we are looking for to lead the state during this difficult time and to reestablish the state to what it once was."
Not surprisingly, the state GOP and Kobach insisted they were delighted with the development, because, as a GOP statement put it, "the defenders of the Topeka status quo are quivering in their loafers," and probably something about the state Deep State, too.
Graves's endorsement came even after the state's House majority leader, Don Hineman, sent out an email warning that no Republicans should even think of endorsing Kelly or perennial candidate Greg Orman, who's running as an independent. But hey, tough talk from Hineman, who said endorsing anyone other than Kobach "could well be a career-ending move for anyone who chose to do so." Guess Graves just doesn't know a threat when he sees one, huh?
Kobach pretended this was the best thing ever, too, issuing a statement saying,
There are two committed liberal candidates in the race, and I am happy that Graves was able to choose one to support. Kansas Democrats have a tough choice to make on the first Tuesday of November.
In other news, Kris Kobach stepped barefoot in dogshit this morning and announced on Twitter that he he'd just owned the libs.
[Lawrence Journal-World / Kansas City Star / Kansas City Star]
Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.